David Beckham will have to return to the Los Angeles Galaxy next month unless AC Milan raise their bid for the England midfielder — the LA Times have reported.
Speaking for the first time on Beckham’s wish for a permanent move to Milan, Tim Leiweke — chief executive of Galaxy owners AEG — told the newspaper that an offer received by the club had been too low and time was running out to meet the Major League Soccer outfit’s valuation. On Wednesday, Beckham expressed his desire to convert his current short-term loan with Milan into a permanent move and walk out on a five-year contract he signed with the Galaxy in 2007. “We need to end the distractions, the circus and the zoo,” Leiweke told the LA Times. “We just received an offer, but it was rejected.” Leiweke said keeping Beckham was still a viable option if Milan failed to match the Galaxy’s asking price, estimated in various reports at between $10 million and $20 million, and if it was in the best interests of the team.
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“If David ultimately is an asset for this team, we want him back,” Leiweke said. “If David has a hunger and a desire to come and help us make the impact on the pitch that we wanted to make with him, but haven’t done yet, then he’s an important member of this team and our intention is to bring him back. “Clearly, if David’s in a position where he wants to finish the season in Milan, and Milan in turn compensates the Galaxy so that we can suffer no damages to our fans or to our team, then we’ll take a look at it. “But we have made it very clear to them that we expect David back here on March 9. They agree and understand we own the contract. They understand the only way we do this is if, when this is all said and done, the Galaxy benefits.” Meanwhile, Beckham will get the chance to win a record-equalling 108th cap for England, after he was named in the squad for Wednesday’s friendly match in Spain. Beckham needs one more appearance for the Three Lions to match Bobby Moore’s best mark for an outfield player and coach Fabio Capello has decided the 33-year-old’s form at AC Milan warrants an instant recall after he was omitted for the win over Germany in Berlin last November. West Ham striker Carlton Cole and Aston Villa midfielder James Milner are the only two uncapped players in the 23-man squad — with Milner one of six Aston Villa players involved.