Soccer

Beckham focuses on fitness

2010-09-29 20:09
David Beckham (AFP)
London - David Beckham says he is not planning another loan spell in European football despite his desire to keep playing for England.

Beckham spent time on loan with AC Milan in the past two years in order to stay fit for international duty during Major League Soccer's offseason, but he says he is focused only on getting in shape for the Los Angeles Galaxy.

Milan has already said it will not sign the 35-year-old midfielder a third time following the Achilles' injury that kept him out of this year's World Cup.

In an interview with FIFA.com, Beckham says he has not ruled out a return to Europe but is not actively looking for a club.

"I'll never say never, but after my injury I need to really focus on getting my full fitness back," Beckham said.

Having recovered from the Achilles tear he sustained playing for Milan in March, Beckham began making substitute appearances for the Galaxy this month. He started for the first time last Friday.

"I was a little surprised that I stayed out there for the full 90 minutes, but it's great to be on from the start again," he said. "It's really tough being out for six months and not being able to play."

Beckham hopes his performances in MLS will persuade England coach Fabio Capello to change his mind and recall the team's former lynchpin.

Capello has suggested that he wants to rejuvenate the team with younger players and will only consider Beckham - England's most experienced ever outfield player with 115 international appearances - for a farewell match in a friendly.

But Beckham wants to keep representing his country until he retires, which could put him in a position to beat goalkeeper Peter Shilton's England all-time record of 125 caps.

"Whether it's over or not is not really down to me," Beckham said. "I want to continue to be available to play for England. That's all I can do. I am passionate about playing for my country and I have been for 15 years now. Ever since I was a little kid all I ever wanted to do was to play for my country.

"Whether the road is over or not, I don't really know, but I will continue to work hard to get my fitness right because that's the important bit at the moment. Once I've done that, we'll know more."

The former England captain isn't lilkely to feature in Capello's squad for next month's European Championship qualifier against Montenegro.

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