Beckham stands firm
David Beckham has no intention of taking part in an England farewell at Wembley.
Having declared that he would no longer select Beckham for any competitive internationals in the future, Fabio Capello added that he was “100% sure” if Beckham was fit, the 35-year-old would be selected for a friendly to say goodbye to the fans who have supported him during his 115-cap career.
A November 17 meeting with France would appear to fit the bill perfectly. However, it seems Beckham has not been consulted over the issue. And, on the basis that he has no intention of announcing his retirement, Press Association Sport understands that he sees no need to take part in a game that would effectively seal his international fate.
Already one England coach, Steve McClaren, has found that ignoring Beckham is not easy, bringing the former Manchester United man back into the fold halfway through his ill-fated reign.
Even Capello left Beckham out at Real Madrid once it became known he was leaving Spain to take up his lucrative contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy, only for the Englishman to prove a pivotal figure in the club’s eventual La Liga title triumph.
This time though it seems to be a fairly terminal situation given Beckham’s age, the fact he is recovering from a serious Achilles injury and Capello’s desire to use younger players.
Having been part of Capello’s back-up team at the World Cup, there were suggestions that a similar role might have been found for Beckham to keep him within the camp. But Capello has confirmed he intends to make a clean break and concentrate on the youngsters at his disposal.
“No,” said the Italian when asked whether Beckham could remain within the England fold. “I am changing everything and we are going forward.
“David Beckham is a fantastic man and a fantastic player. My relationship with him is really good. I am 100% sure he will play the next friendly game if he is fit. But we need young players and we need talented players and the players we used against Hungary are young and they have talent.”
The Italian, and by definition, the Football Association, have endured a huge amount of criticism for failing to inform Beckham of the content of Capello’s pre-match interview, which was recorded on Monday and broadcast before England’s match on Wednesday. What the 64-year-old failed to mention in his apparent snub was that trusted assistant Franco Baldini had contacted Beckham, so the 35-year-old was aware of what had been said prior to the broadcast on ITV.