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Jan 31, 2013

Beckham's PSG wages go to charity

David Beckham has taken the unique step of agreeing to donate his Paris Saint-Germain salary to a children's charity in the French capital.

Johnson: All eyes on PSG as Beckham arrives

Netherton: Becks adds PR credibility to PSG

Beckham, 37, was presented to the press on Thursday evening after signing a five-month deal with the Ligue 1 outfit. While his arrival at the Parc des Princes came as no surprise after sightings of him in Paris earlier in the day, Beckham did raise more than a few eyebrows with his announcement that he would not pocket a euro for his services.

"I'm lucky to have achieved what I've achieved and earned what I have earned," he explained. "One of the reasons to come here is that with Nasser [Al Khelaifi, PSG president] and [sporting director] Leonardo, we've  decided on something quite unique.

"I won't receive any salary. My salary will go to a local children's charity in Paris. I'm very excited about that. I'm not sure it's been done before. I'm very passionate about children and so are the club."

Leonardo added that the name of the charity and sum it will receive has yet to be decided upon given initial contact over the move only occurred in the early hours of Thursday.

The ex-Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder had been out of contract since leaving the Los Angeles Galaxy in December.

Beckham, who was pursued by clubs across the globe, also explained why he rejected a move back to England, where his wife and children will remain while he plays in Paris.

"I've always said that I didn't want to play for another [English] club than Manchester United. I have a long history with them, I supported them and always dreamed of playing for them. I'm honoured by the offers I had from the Premier League, but I didn't want to play there if it wasn't for Manchester United."

Though he has been training with Arsenal, the former England captain admitted he was still short of match fitness, and even when he is available for selection, does not expect any favours from Carlo Ancelotti, whom he worked under during a loan spell at AC Milan in 2009.

"I've always been 150% committed to whichever team I've played for. I've never expected to be in the starting XI. I don't expect to come into the team and play every single game. I expect to help as much as possible. If I work hard, it's down to the manager. I don't automatically expect a first-team place, I have to work for that," he said.

"I have a lot of experience, I've played for some of the biggest clubs, played with some of the best players. I'm still being successful and fit at 37 - I can still run around like I did when I was 21. I haven't lost my pace as that was never one of my strong points in the first place."

Though he has penned only a short-term playing deal at the Parc des Princes, Beckham suggested his link to PSG may continue beyond the end of this Ligue 1 campaign.

"We haven't talked about that. We have brushed over it, but a long-term partnership is what we've looked for. Playing is short-term, but I'm very proud to be part of this organisation," he said, before casting doubt that his playing career would end in June, a month after he turns 38.

"I don't know if it'll be my last contract. People have been speculating about my last contract for a number of years, and I keep playing and signing contracts. We'll see how I feel at the end of the season.

"I want to keep playing as long as possible. My passion is football. When I play, it's never been about the biggest contract and the most money. I want to play for the biggest teams and with the best players."

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