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Last Updated: Sunday, 27 May 2007, 09:31 GMT 10:31 UK
Lalas warns England over Beckham
David Beckham
He has a responsibility on and off the field to our organisation and our sport and he recognises that

Alexi Lalas on David Beckham
LA Galaxy general manager Alexi Lalas has warned England coach Steve McClaren he will not be happy if David Beckham is picked for inappropriate friendlies.

The 32-year-old midfielder's England recall raises the prospect of him playing internationals when he moves to the United States from Real Madrid.

"I don't want to stand in the way of a player representing his country but they have to be the appropriate games.

"But his call-up is wonderful news for us," Lalas told BBC Five Live.

However, under Fifa regulations the American outfit will not be able to prevent Beckham playing in England friendlies.

Major League Soccer side Galaxy have sold thousands of season tickets on the back of Beckham's arrival - once he has seen out the season in Spain.

Lalas conceded: "We will deal with it from a business perspective but for us to say one of our players is representing England internationally is a great thing.

"There are business challenges but there is an educated public here when it comes to this international game we play. We recognise that when we are going out and getting these stars they have responsibilities, domestically and internationally.

England manager Steve McClaren
England boss McClaren recalled Beckham to face Brazil and Estonia

"It is no different than when our American players are called up to play in different tournaments. We lose them at different times and we deal with it on the field and off it.

"I would think they would have to be competitive matches. If it works out scheduling-wise, we would be happy to let him go.

"From a business perspective, it is not the greatest news as we are selling a team with David Beckham in it and a lot of people are excited about seeing him play with the Galaxy.

"He has a responsibility on and off the field to our organisation and our sport and he recognises that.

"There is a bigger picture and I would never stand in the way of any of our players representing their country - I know how important it is and what an honour it is. We will sit down and talk to him."

And Lalas insists that the standard of football in the US will not hinder Beckham's chances of staying in McClaren's plans.

8 Sept: England v Israel
12 Sept: England v Russia
13 Oct: England v Estonia
17 Oct: Russia v England
21 Nov: England v Croatia

"There was an undercurrent of whether he was on his way down and if he was going to the US to hang out," added Lalas.

"That is certainly not the case and the fitness part isn't a problem.

"In fact I would argue the MLS is more physically taxing than other leagues.

"We understand we're a developing league but I refuse to think a player can't develop in MLS as well as other leagues and if he is lucky enough to be called up while he is playing with the Galaxy he will be mentally and physically fit.

"If he misses a cross or doesn't score a goal people will say it is because he is in America. If he is playing well they will say it is because he is a brilliant player. We probably can't win either way."


Beckham celebrated his recall by helping Real move a step closer to the Spanish title.

He set up two goals in a 3-1 win over Deportivo La Coruna and manager Fabio Capello said: "He's in extraordinary physical condition.

"When he puts the ball into the centre he does it with much precision, speed and quality. He's in great shape."

Ruud van Nistelrooy scored the third goal and added: "I wish David wasn't leaving as he is playing so well now.

"Maybe the Galaxy can loan him out to Madrid for a year. I'm not sure that is going to happen but I would love it if it did.

"It is well deserved for him to be back in the England squad.

"He's at the top of his game and is maybe as good as he has ever been."

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27 May 07 |  Internationals
Beckham recalled to England squad
26 May 07 |  Internationals
Pick your England XI
26 May 07 |  Internationals
Debate: Beckham returns
25 May 07 |  Football
McClaren must resist Beckham call
25 May 07 |  Internationals
McClaren ends Beckham England era
11 Aug 06 |  Internationals


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