May 16, 2013

Beckham: 'Good way to go out'

Rob Harris / The Associated Press

(Continued from page 1)

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David Beckham will retire after his last two games with Paris Saint-Germain. Beckham, 38, made 115 appearances with England’s national team, a record for non-goalkeepers.

The Associated Press

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Paris Saint-Germain's David Beckham celebrates his team's victory in a French League One soccer match against Lyon, in Lyon, France, on Sunday.

The Associated Press

Victoria Beckham said the couple is "excited about the next chapter in our lives."

"The children and I are so proud of David. It's been an incredible journey for us all as we have watched him play at clubs all over the world throughout the last 15 years," she said.

With United between 1992 and 2003, Beckham won six Premier League titles, the Champions League, two FA Cups and the Intercontinental Cup.

Beckham left United in 2003 shortly after Manager Alex Ferguson accidentally struck Beckham's eye with a soccer boot. Ferguson announced his retirement from Manchester United last week.

Beckham spent four years in Madrid -- winning the 2007 Spanish title before making the surprise move to Major League Soccer, where he won the title twice.

"I just want people to see me as a hardworking footballer," Beckham said. "Someone who is passionate about the game, somebody who every time I have stepped on the pitch I have given everything that I have."

There were highs and lows in Beckham's international career. He was blamed for England's elimination from the 1998 World Cup for his red card against Argentina, but scored the winning goal against the same team at the World Cup four years later.

Beckham responded to jeering at the 2000 European Championship with an obscene hand gesture to England fans, but was lauded by the same supporters little more than a year later when his last-minute free kick against Greece secured a place at the 2002 World Cup.

England dropped Beckham in 2006 in an effort to renew the team with younger players after a quarterfinal exit at that year's World Cup.

England Coach Steve McClaren recalled him the following year after a poor run of form, and he returned for the remainder of England's unsuccessful attempt to qualify for the 2008 European Championship.

His last England appearance came against Belarus in October 2009, and he missed the 2010 World Cup because of an Achilles tendon injury.

"I want to thank all my teammates, the great managers that I had the pleasure of learning from," Beckham said. "I also want to thank the fans who have all supported me and given me the strength to succeed."

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