Beckham Triumphant, On To Galaxy

David Beckham has ended his time with Real Madrid in a fine way by helping his side to the Primera Liga title on Sunday. But it wasn't without a little drama.

With a home win over Real Mallorca, Madrid would maintain their razor-thin margin over Barcelona and be crowned champions for the first time in four years. But early on, any celebration seemed premature as Mallorca staked themselves to the lead after 17 minutes and held on to it through an hour of play.

Injuries had forced early departures for leading scorer Ruud van Nistelrooy and also Beckham, who was battling an ankle injury. Making things worse, Barcelona jumped all over Gimnastic Tarragona on their way to a 5-1 victory. It seemed as if Madrid's title hopes would be dashed once more.

While Beckham was forced to come off in the 66th minute, his substitute wasted no time in making an impact on the game. Jose Antonio Reyes, a forward on-loan from Arsenal, scored in the 68th minute to tie the game, 1-1, and later added an insurance goal after a Miguel Moya own-goal gave Madrid the lead for good. "My dreams have come true," Reyes said. "My goals today have been better than any other goals I've scored before."

The game seemed to mirror Madrid's season in that they were forced to come from behind once more to claim the title. After the final whistle, the celebration began. David Beckham made one more victory lap in front of the faithful at the Bernabeu, including wife Victoria and three children, and new best friends Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes. "I couldn't have dreamt it any better. It's been about winning the title for the last six months - and we've deserved it tonight," Beckham declared.After the celebrations die down, Beckham will be given some time to recuperate his ankle before being asked to save another team's season - this time halfway around the world in Los Angeles. Unofficially, his first game will be an exhibition against Chelsea on July 21st, a day that will live in infamy for soccer in America.

As a side note, the Galaxy put up a message on the scoreboard during Sunday's game against Real Salt Lake that congratulated Beckham for becoming champion, drawing a huge cheer from those in attendance - and perhaps motivating the team as they went on to pick up the victory for the first time in six matches.

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