Brazil legend Pele has told David Beckham not to expect an easy ride when he starts playing in the United States.
Pele is predicting a tough settling-in period for Beckham
Beckham, 32, will be unveiled as a Los Angeles Galaxy player on Friday.
Pele, who played for New York Cosmos in the 1970s, said: "I advise him it will be very difficult to play because the teams are very good and mark very well.
"He must be prepared, be in good condition because it is not easy to play in the United States. The football is now at a high level."
Pele, who scored 77 goals for Brazil in 92 appearances, added: "In my time it was a little different. It was more complicated.
"I came here to start (the professional game). The football here was just amateur and college. The football has grown a lot over here.
"I had the opportunity to play with great players - Franz Beckenbauer, Carlos Alberto, Giorgio Chinaglia, Johan Cruyff. This motivated the kids, the people, to come into the game.
"Now Beckham has to continue the work."
The Brazilian suggested Beckham just might bring the right mix of celebrity and skill to accomplish the mission in the United States, whose national team has reached the last five World Cups.
"He is one of the players in the last 10 years who has most promoted himself and the football.
"Since he left England for Real Madrid, it's always like this. His wife is an entertainer, she was a singer. This made Beckham now become a showman."