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Retirement tests if Beckham built lasting brand

A teary David Beckham leaves the field during his last home game for Paris Saint-Germain.
A teary David Beckham leaves the field during his last home game for Paris Saint-Germain.thibault camus/associated press

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Never a stranger to the big stage, David Beckham was finally overwhelmed and reduced to tears as he went out in a burst of fireworks and cheers Saturday in his final home game for Paris Saint-Germain before retirement.

There also was some soccer to be played. And Beckham, appointed captain for the game, was involved in two of his team’s goals in a 3-1 victory over Brest.

Beckham’s pecs are at least as much a part of his brand as his kick; his brand of shoes ultimately more lucrative than the game he’s giving up. Listed as the world’s highest-earning athlete for 2013, Beckham’s retirement from play still leaves him with valuable endorsements and unparalleled celebrity. The question is whether he can maintain it.

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