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Page last updated at 22:56 GMT, Monday, 20 July 2009 23:56 UK

Beckham confronts fans after boos


LA Galaxy fans boo Beckham

David Beckham was involved in an angry confrontation with Los Angeles Galaxy fans during his first home game since completing his loan spell at AC Milan.

The 34-year-old England midfielder missed the first half of the Major League Soccer season in order to play for the Serie A giants.

And he was jeered by sections of the sell-out crowd during Sunday's friendly which was ironically against Milan.

"The majority of fans have been great," Beckham insisted afterwards.

"It was only one or two that, you know, it was to be expected.

"Sometimes it goes beyond it. I tried to shake one of the guy's hands but he didn't want any of it. That's the way it is."

Boos were louder than cheers as the players were introduced prior to kick-off and every touch from the former England captain was jeered early on by sections of the 27,000 sell-out crowd.

While it is important that our fans remain free to voice their opinions, they must do so in an appropriate manner

LA Galaxy boss Bruce Arena

Several fans made their displeasure known with banners and as the players went off at the interval Beckham had to be escorted from the field by security as he walked over to an area of seats to confront jeering fans.

One supporter jumped down and had to be restrained before being taken away.

Galaxy boss Bruce Arena did his best to play down the reception received by Beckham.

"We regret the incident that happened at the end of the first half," he said in a statement.

"While it is important that our fans remain free to voice their opinions, they must do so in an appropriate manner.

Beckham expected reaction from crowd

"We appreciate our players' and fans' passion for the team and the game, but we all must aim to hold ourselves to higher standards."

It marked the end of a turbulent week for Beckham since his return to the United States, who also had to placate team-mates following comments by Galaxy captain Landon Donovan.

The pair met with coach Bruce Arena after Beckham responded to the remarks from Donovan that accused the former Manchester United and Real Madrid player of being unprofessional.

The match itself ended 2-2, Beckham doing his talking on the pitch by having a hand in both Galaxy goals.

For the first he played a trademark cross-field ball to Donovan, who then set up Alan Gordon, while for the second, and with Galaxy 2-1 down, it was Beckham's corner that was headed home by Bryan Jordan.

After that he turned to a section of fans who had been particularly vociferous and shrugged his shoulders, while he applauded those fans who had been supportive when he was withdrawn in the 75th minute.

"There's not another player on this team or in this league who can make those kinds of plays," stated Donovan. "That's going to be crucial for us."


Earlier this year, Beckham said he wanted to remain with the Italian club rather than return to the Galaxy.

He also revealed earlier this month he would consider a return to the Premier League because it would improve his chances of playing for England at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

Milan manager Leonardo did not rule out a return to the San Siro for Beckham.

"His charisma is very important for other players," he said through a translator. "We are really happy with his situation."

Beckham played in Galaxy's 3-1 win at the New York Red Bulls during his first game back in the US and with six games of the MLS season remaining his side are third in the Western Conference.

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see also
Video - LA Galaxy fans boo Beckham
20 Jul 09 |  Football
Beckham expected reaction from crowd
20 Jul 09 |  Football
Capello urges Beckham Euro return
16 Jul 09 |  Football
Beckham in Premier League U-turn
14 Jul 09 |  Football
Beckham hits back at Donovan slur
12 Jul 09 |  Football
LA team-mate hits out at Beckham
02 Jul 09 |  Football

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