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Beckham Watches Galaxy Defeat Pachua

CARSON, Calif. (AP) _ Landon Donovan scored in the 81st minute and the Los Angeles Galaxy defeated Pachua 2-1 while playing without David Beckham in its opening match of the SuperLiga tournament on Tuesday night.

It was the Galaxy's first victory since Beckham joined his new team July 13 in a splashy introduction. They had lost to Tigres _ Beckham didn't play _ and Chelsea in the English star's debut last Saturday.

The inaugural SuperLiga involves four Major League Soccer teams and four from the Mexican first division in a round-robin tournament. FC Dallas and Chivas played to a 1-1 tie in Texas.

The only Beckham sightings came on the stadium's big screen. He didn't dress for the match because of a nagging left ankle injury that has prevented him from training since he joined the team.

His absence gave the Galaxy a rude reminder of life before Beckham. There were plenty of empty seats in the 27,000-seat stadium and a decided lack of camera flashes. The announced attendance was 19,317.

Even without him on the field, six yellow-jacketed security guards strung a plastic cord around the Galaxy's bench to keep photographers at a safe distance after they had swarmed within inches of Beckham at his debut.

The sight of Beckham on the big screen drew a mix of boos and cheers, provoking a smile from him. He was dressed in a brown T-shirt and sat in a box with his youngest son, 2-year-old Cruz, on his lap.

After a scoreless first half, Galaxy captain Donovan sent a pass to Gordon, who chested the ball and fired a 16-yard shot inside the right post.

After Gordon scored, Beckham was shown with his arms wrapped around his son, clapping and smiling.

Gordon and Pachuca's Aquivaldo Mosquera later received yellow cards for a shoving match in front of the goal.

Pachuca tied the match in the 78th minute when Rafael Marquez Lugo scored off a pass from Damian Alvarez, delighting a small but vocal section of Pachuca fans.

The Galaxy came back three minutes later to score the go-ahead goal. Cobi Jones passed to Donovan, who jumped high and the ball deflected off his right leg and into the net.

The Galaxy's next SuperLiga game is against Chivas on Saturday at the Los Angeles Coliseum, where it was moved to accommodate an expected huge crowd as a result of Chivas' Southern California fan base.

Pachuca, Mexico's oldest club team founded in 1901, became the country's first team to win a South American club title last year. Nicknamed ``Los Tuzos,'' or the Gophers, Pachuca has won four Mexican league titles and the CONCACAF Champions Cup since 1999.
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