David Beckham has no plans to quit England after 100th appearance

jueves, 27 de marzo de 2008 |

David Beckham has no intention of saying goodbye to England after reaching 100 appearances.

The Los Angeles Galaxy star, who reached the milestone Wednesday night, maintains the wave he gave when he walked off during England's 1-0 loss to France was just an acknowledgment of the standing ovation that even the French fans gave him.

"I don't know where the rumours came from but they weren't from me," Beckham said. "It is 100 not out as far as I am concerned. The wave at the end was not a goodbye, just a thank you.

"The reception when I came off from both sets of fans was amazing. You obviously expect it off your own fans and I thank them for that but from the French people as well, it was an amazing standing ovation."

Although Beckham didn't even have a shot on goal and collected a yellow card for a foul on French goalscorer Franck Ribery, he was satisfied with his performance.

"The most important thing for me was to prove my fitness and I felt that I did that. I felt very fresh and a lot better than I thought I would," he said after playing 62 minutes at the Stade de France.

"As much as you work hard in pre-season, there is nothing better than playing in games and I enjoyed it."

Even though he had been replaced, Beckham was the last England player to walk off the field. At the end of the game, he walked back on, hugged France defender William Gallas, and had a long talk with the Arsenal player before again waving and applauding the fans.

"If there was another place I would have liked the game after Wembley, it would have been in Paris because it is where (Zinedine) Zidane played," he said in reference to his former Real Madrid teammate. Zidane scored two goals in the 1998 World Cup final at the same stadium where France beat Brazil 3-0.

"It is also one of my most favorite cities and I have a house in the South of France."

Beckham, who turns 33 in May, believes he will still be fit enough to play at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, assuming England qualifies.

"I want it to carry on," he said. "It doesn't stop here for me."

"I still feel I can perform at the highest level. The 2010 World Cup remains an ambition for me. I am quite a stubborn person so it is something I want to reach. I'd love to be part of the squad in 2010."

Although the loss was greeted by scathing criticism in the English media on Thursday, Capello was satisfied with the performance.

"As I told the players I am very happy with what they did because we made progress compared with the Switzerland game," he said, referring to England's 2-1 victory over the Swiss at Wembley last month.

"I am happy because I saw some very good things, especially because we played against a top level team and we showed our value. I am happy because I made the team play two different ways and I could see many players. Therefore my ideas are a lot clearer for the future."

Capello was also pleased with Beckham.

"He played like I know he can play," said Capello, who has only friendlies between now and qualifying for the 2010 World Cup because England failed to reach this summer's European championship.

"I only substituted him because I know how he can play and I wanted to see other players."

Beckham, who was overlooked by Capello for the Switzerland game because the Italian didn't consider him fit enough during Major League Soccer's off-season, called on the England fans to be patient with the new manager while he tries new formations, tactics and selections.

"As soon as a new manager comes in, there is always a period when it takes time to get going," Beckham said. "But he was pleased with the fact we passed the ball around well and in the first half kept a lot of possession.

"But if you don't score in that time, teams like France are always going to capitalize on it. And they did."

Via canadianpress

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