• France's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Beckham to PSG: The view from France

Dan MacGuill · 31 Jan 2013, 17:17

Published: 31 Jan 2013 17:17 GMT+01:00

Media firestorm

“Beckham at PSG…confirmed!”, said RMC Sport, while broadsheet Le Monde responded more soberly, declaring “Beckham signed by PSG (again)”, in reference to the fact Beckham was supposed to have signed for PSG this time last year, before he pulled the plug at the last minute.

Le Figaro talked money, heralding “PSG’s great marketing coup,” while most French media outlets hurried to post “first images” of Beckham departing a Paris hospital.

Website 20 Minutes even poses the question "Can Beckham save the French league 1" noting that despite the superstar's arrival, five French international players left France this winter to ply their trade abroad.

French football responds

French sporting daily L’Equipe got straight to business, asking readers whether Beckham’s presence at PSG would be a boost to their chances of winning the French domestic league, Ligue 1. The verdict – 43% say yes, 57% say no.

Former national team manager Raymond Domenech stood out for his under-statement, when asked for his take by Eurosport.  “I don’t know. I’m not up to date.” Domenech, French boss until a disastrous World Cup performance in 2010, was commentating on women’s tennis at the time.

By contrast, current coach of Les Bleus, Didier Deschamps, was slightly more forthcoming. “[Beckham] is a personality who goes beyond the framework of football, a bit like [PSG star striker] Zlatan Ibrahimovic. These are players who can give [French football] Ligue 1 greater visibility abroad. It’s a good thing for Ligue 1.”

Toulouse player Adil Hermach, who could come up against Beckham when his team plays PSG at the weekend was not that impressed.

"I am not going to go easy on him and I won't be asking how Victoria is," Hermach told 20 Minutes.

Social networks explode

This afternoon, Beckham published a photo of himself on his Facebook page, sitting on a plane to the French capital. Within two hours it had these staggering stats attached to it:

Two tweets that perfectly capture the two different strands of online opinion on the move:

Finally, controversial English midfielder Joey Barton, who currently plays for Olympique Marseille, gave his compatriot a welcome (of sorts):

Story continues below…

Fans react

Beckham's move to the French club has obviously caused a stir among PSG's fans, with most welcoming the move.

"Beckham will bring his winning mentality and professionalism to the team," PSG fan Nicolas Lartigue told The Local. "He won't play every game but his crosses and free kicks will be a real bonus.

"Ok he's a bit of a grandpa in the world of football but he will be brilliant for the PSG brand, especially in Asia".

Fan message boards also went into over drive.

"Beckham will play, but only for the last ten minutes. He's been bought just to sell shirts, that's for sure," said one fan on Forum PSG.

Dan MacGuill (dan.macguill@thelocal.com)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
France church attackers 'smiled' and spoke of Koran
Three nuns were in the church when Father Jacques Hamel was killed. Photo: AFP

One of the jihadists who murdered an elderly French priest smiled as he carried out the attack, and nuns who witnessed the grisly murder said the killers spoke about the Koran.

Summer in France: The top ten beaches
Photo: Gomezdegomera/Flickr

How many have you been to?

France braces for busiest day of traffic all summer
Photo: AFP

Thinking of driving this weekend? The French are being advised to think twice.

Opinion
'France has problems but it's not on brink of civil war'
A French police officer stands in front of a Muslim prayer room after it was destroyed by a fire, suspected to be arson, in Ajaccio.. Photo: AFP

While certain French politicians and security chiefs have openly talked of the nightmare prospect of civil war in France, one expert tells The Local the country is too resolute to go down that path.

Ten hidden gems in France you should visit this summer
Photo: Erik Harström/Flickr

Looking for holiday ideas this summer?

What's on: Ten cool things to do in France in August 2016
Photo: AFP

August is almost here - and we've got you covered for events.

Paris in August: Should you stay or should you go now?
Photo: AFP

When it comes to August in Paris, you're either a stayer or a goer. But which is the best choice?

French PM: 'France needs new relationship with Islam'
Photo: AFP

As France struggles to get to grips with an increasing number of terror attacks the French PM says the country needs a new relationship with Islam.

France's Muslims urged to attend mass in solidarity
Photo: AFP

A leading Muslim group in France has called on its community to attend a church mass this Sunday to show solidarity with Christians after the recent jihadist killing of a priest.

Hopes hit as France reports 'disappointing' zero growth
Photo: AFP

Hopes of small economic growth in France were hit on Friday when the latest GDP figures were announced.

Sponsored Article
5 reasons to try dating in Paris with The Inner Circle
Travel
Summer in France: The top ten beaches
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
France: A timeline of terror since the Charlie Hebdo attack
A timeline of terror in France since Charlie Hebdo
Culture
Thirteen free and easy ways to learn French
Culture
32 mistakes foreigners make when they arrive in France
National
Here are the worst scams to avoid whilst driving in France
Analysis & Opinion
Isis can simply be a conduit for the violent desires of psychopaths
Features
Six outdoor bars in Paris you simply must visit
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Culture
The open-air Villette cinema has been cancelled over security fears
Culture
Henri Rousseau exhibition proves huge hit in Paris
National
Frenchman caught trying to sell Nice massacre souvenirs online
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Society
OPEN NOW: Here's why you should head to the Paris Plages
Culture
What's on in France: Still plenty to see and do in July
Lifestyle
Treasures of Versailles to go on display in Australia
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
National
How to keep cool during France's heatwave
National
Nice attack: What we know so far
National
Nice attacker: Body-building, drug-taking, violent flirt
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
National
IN IMAGES: Drawings in tribute to Nice attack victims
Society
Promenade des Anglais: The iconic heart of the French Riviera
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
France faces more questions after latest deadly attack
National
Why is France the target of choice for jihadist attacks?
National
Nice truck attack: 'Bodies went flying like bowling pins'
Nice attack: Families of missing make pleas on Twitter
2,755
jobs available