Replacing David Beckham around the Home Depot Center

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Since time will be short before this January transfer window opens, L.A. Galaxy management is surely, already, talking about those Designated Player replacements for David Beckham.

Don’t forget, the Galaxy will need to be back in camp earlier than most MLS clubs, with that early CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal on deck. That can only add another pancake or two to the stack of pressure here.

First off, of course, is gathering up Landon Donovan’s status. (More on this later.)  aving to replace Beckham is one thing; having two Designated Player spots available would change the entire DP dynamic here, opening up quite a few more options.

For instance, the Galaxy could bring in a Frank Lampard as a signing that checks the boxes on “useful” and “splashy,”  and then employ another one to gather up a difference-maker more in his prime, someone with even greater value to the club’s competitive pursuits.

Either way, with one or two DP spots to fill, the other wildcard here might be Omar Gonzalez.

The big American center back could well be the most important Los Angeles Galaxy man of all. We all saw how alarmingly rickety that back line became in his absence during those early months of woe around the Home Depot Center.  As much as Robbie Keane did over the season’s final two months on offense, Gonzalez did just as much over the final four months to stabilize that leaky defense.

And that kind of stabilizing rear guard force will come at an increasing price. It’s possible that Gonzalez, 24, might even require DP dollars to extend his Galaxy days.

This is a good place to start as we all explore the Galaxy’s impending DP pursuit, a look at life after David Beckham (complete with lots of handy numbers) at LAG Confidential.