LONDON - David Beckham looks likely to make his 108th England appearance next week after coach Fabio Capello recalled him to the squad on Saturday having been impressed by the midfielder's fitness since he joined AC Milan. Beckham, who turns 34 in May, will equal Bobby Moore's record number of caps for an outfield player if he plays in the friendly against Spain in Seville on Wednesday. "He is better than he was six months ago," Capello told reporters. "He is fit now. This is important for David and for us. And every player in the squad has to play, not just train. "He is a very important player and I've watched him in one game in Milan and (deputies) Italo Galbiati and Franco Baldini saw his other games. He is getting better and better with each game." Capello has been delighted with the form of the former Manchester United and Real Madrid player since he was loaned from Los Angeles Galaxy to the Serie A club. The former England captain, initially discarded by Capello's predecessor Steve McClaren, scored twice in his first five appearances. Capello, who managed Beckham at Real Madrid in 2006-07, said he had no interest in players' personal milestones. "I never think about this when I choose a player or make a substitution," he said. Beckham, on loan at Milan until March 9, wants to stay in Italy permanently although the Serie A club said on Saturday the Galaxy had rejected their first offer for the midfielder. Capello said he could understand Beckham's desire to remain at Milan, a club he managed for six years and led to nine major trophies including the Champions League in 1994. "The game is different in Serie A," Capello added. "There is more pressure. It is stronger. That is the difference. I think he wants to stay for those reasons -- it's exciting, Milan are a good team. "But he has to choose. I've never spoken to him about it, that is not my job. It's AC Milan or Los Angeles' problems. David is very fit now and this is important."
7 February 2009
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