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Beckham vows to reclaim England place

LONDON, England — David Beckham is determined to win his place back in the England team after being left out of Fabio Capello’s first squad for the friendly against Switzerland next week.

Speaking in Brazil just ahead of Thursday’s squad announcement, Beckham said: I will carry on working hard and trying to get back in.

I won’t get bitter and twisted because I am old enough and I have got enough respect for the manager to realize that if it does not happen, life goes on.

I have been lucky enough in my career to come back from tough times and disappointments. If it doesn’t happen (winning a 100th cap), I will come back from it again. If it does, then great.

Beckham has spent much of the last month training with Arsenal and their manager Arsene Wenger weighed into the debate on Friday by praising his high level of fitness.

We were all amazed how good he was, he said.

I believe the English national team still needs Beckham because he can still make decisions and his experience will be needed in the big games and that is why I am sure he will get his 100th cap.

Instead of linking up with the England squad next week, Beckham is now flying back to begin training with Los Angeles Galaxy ahead of the Major League Soccer season which starts in March.

Beckham has not played a competitive match since November’s disastrous home defeat to Croatia which saw them eliminated from Euro 2008.

It was his 99th international cap and it was widely expected that Capello would award the former England captain his 100th against the Swiss.

But Capello was concerned about his lack of match practice and opted to give younger players an opportunity to impress ahead of crucial World Cup qualifiers in the autumn.

English Football Association chief executive Brian Barwick backed Capello’s decision to drop Beckham but hinted he would like to see the midfielder eventually earn 100 caps.

The coach picks the team, he picks the squad and the tactics, and the most important arguments he has to make are football arguments, Barwick said in the Guardian.

In an ideal world, there’s a logic to David Beckham having 100 caps but first and foremost it’s the coach’s decision and I respect that.

Beckham was also adamant that he had no thoughts of retiring from international football despite the latest snub. I don’t want to retire yet and I don’t plan on retiring from club or international football. But you never say never. Things might change that might make me feel maybe it is time.

Some people might say that if I win 100 caps I should call it a day then and quit on my own terms but that decision can only come from me.

I have always said that when I didn’t feel I could play at the top level, I would retire. But I still feel I can play at that level.

For Capello’s part he claimed he was not ruling out a possible return for Beckham later in the year.

The reason that David is not in the squad is because he has not had any real match practice since playing in November. When I spoke with David on the phone yesterday (Wednesday) I advised him that he is still part of my plans and once he is playing regularly in America we will look closely at him again, said the Italian who took over from Steve McClaren after the Croatia defeat. E-mail to a friend

Beckham vows to reclaim England place – found here.

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February 1, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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