McClaren Sets Up Lose Lose
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Saturday, May 26, 2007

McClaren Sets Up Lose Lose

Steve McClaren might think recalling David Beckham was sound strategy, but he has truly set up a lose-lose situation for himself.

It breaks down like this:

-If Beckham plays well, McClaren looks like a boob and Becks possibly receives credit for helping put England back on track to qualify for Euro 08.

-If Becks plays badly, surely the former England captain will take some heat, but McClaren will look bad as well, seeing that Beckham's Real Madrid boss, Fabio Capello, has been able to coax sterling performances from the superstar.

Ultimately, an unthinkable loss to Estonia would be McClaren's undoing, but the win they will likely secure will not provide any glory to McClaren. A win would be seen as what is expected.

Now if McClaren leaves Becks out, then maybe the under-fire manager has bought himself some time until the midfielder leaves for the United States. Then McClaren can argue that MLS players are not up to European standards and no one will be able to say differently.

Presumably there is an outside chance McClaren just picked David Beckham because he's in great form, and the England boss actually just wants to put out his best eleven this time around. But that's probably not the case.

It's more likely McClaren has either misjudged the situation or there is some sort of political pressure from somewhere in the England brain-trust that is driving the recall.

Either way, McClaren's chance to claim glory all to himself might slip through his grasp if he allows Beckham to step onto the pitch Friday versus Brazil, or next week against Estonia.

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