So we heard late last night the news that we all feared David Beckham isn’t going to make it to the World Cup in South Africa. As a proud England fan who has watched our team stutter and start through various tournaments I have to admit I am not surprised we have our first big absence. We should all be used to it by now. It was the last two big tournaments that taught us all about the famous metatarsal following injuries to Beckham and Wayne Rooney.

There is no doubt David Beckham has given his all for England out there on the pitch, he is a great role model for kids and has been pretty much the ultimate professional footballer and for that he should be applauded. Personally, I was hoping he was going to make it to the World Cup because, after all he is David Beckham, but yesterday as he warmed up kicking a ball for AC Milan he felt a twinge in his Achilles tendon and that was that.

First question, has all that travelling around the globe effected the blood flow to his ankles and caused the injury? No not in my view – it simply looks like being just one of those things.

The truth is David, all though once truly brilliant, has failed to shine this season over in Italy and even if he had of made it to the world cup he would have only been a bit part player coming on a substitute with that lethal right foot of his. He would have been great support for the younger players because he has been there and done it and could provide them with his advice as a veteran.

David Beckham the brand will continue to shine but I think the fact that David isn’t going to South Africa is both a good thing and a bad one for the FA. Firstly, it means the huge media circus he brings with him won’t be there. Although this can be a bit distracting for the players and the coaches it also sells people the England brand around the world.

People still want to see David and that’s a fact, Fifa’s very own Sepp Blatter once said England stood a better chance of winning the opportunity to stage the World Cup in 2018 if Beckham fronted it. Why? Because he is David Beckham and has something about him that everyone wants to see and touch – the star quality or X-factor.

In my opinion, I think the FA should take Beckham along in an advisory role for the players and bring him in for his experience. In footballing terms I don’t think we have to worry too much as we have some great young players on the wings with players like Theo Walcott, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Joe Cole, James Milner, Adam Johnson and even Steven Gerrard.

So win or Fail? Unfortunately, I think this is a PR fail because David Beckham does bring something different to the England brand. He sells shirts due to his star quality and shows his passion for the country on the pitch. I think we should all say a big thank you to David for his service to England but now it’s time to move on and find his successor. Who knows maybe one of the younger players will become the next David Beckham at this world cup? Just keep your fingers, toes and eyes crossed nothing happens to our friend Wayne because that really would be catastrophic.

About Chris Norton

Chris Norton is the founder of Prohibition and an award winning communications consultant with more than twenty years’ experience. He was a lecturer at Leeds Beckett University and has had a varied PR career having worked both in-house and in a number of large consultancies. He is an Integrated PR and social media blogger and writes on a wide variety of blogs across a huge amount of topics from digital marketing, social media marketing right through to technology and crisis management.