Previous
Deportivo La Coruña
Getafe
7:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Schalke 04
FC Augsburg
7:30 PM GMT
Game Details
AS Monaco
Stade de Reims
7:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Norwich City
Bolton Wanderers
7:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Morelia
Monterrey
1:30 AM GMT
Game Details
Next

Five best America-Chivas games

Liga MX 4 minutes ago
Read

Faitelson: Pressure on Club America

Liga MX 23 hours ago
Read

Hernandez: Five matches to watch

Liga MX 22 hours ago
Read

Barca must shake clasico cobwebs

Barcelona 45 minutes ago
Read

Barca must shake clasico cobwebs

Barcelona 45 minutes ago
Read
Apr 5, 2013

David Beckham to start for PSG

PARIS -- Paris Saint-Germain coach Carlo Ancelotti has defended David Beckham, saying the former England captain will "definitely start" against Barcelona in the second leg of the Champions League quarterfinals.

Beckham started his first Champions League match in three years on Tuesday, and was removed with 20 minutes left before PSG twice came back to earn a 2-2 draw.

The 37-year-old midfielder was given harsh reviews by some French media.

"It's not normal, and (it's) unjust," Ancelotti said. "He had a really good match, he followed exactly what I told him to do. He had to play quickly, get the ball up front, and changed the game. I don't understand the criticism."

Beckham joined PSG in January for five months after his contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy expired.

Critics have said Beckham was signed by PSG mainly to sell jerseys and raise its profile outside France. Some have speculated Ancelotti was told to start the former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder against Barcelona.

"I've had a lot of experience with these type of comments. It happened to me at AC Milan several times," Ancelotti said. "People have to understand that you can't force a coach to use a player. Presidents are very intelligent. In any case, with the ones I've had -- (Silvio) Berlusconi, (Roman) Abramovich, Nasser (Al-Khelaifi) -- it's never happened with me.

"I started coaching in 1995 and I've never been sacked midseason. That means that I've never had pressure to use a player, because if I had I would have gone home or gone on holiday. It annoys me that people can think that."

Ancelotti already knows how he'll use Beckham at the Nou Camp on Wednesday.

"He will definitely start the return match," Ancelotti said. "The aim is to put out a team that can win the match. I'm not a Beckham supporter, nor a friend of Beckham. I try to be objective.

"Sometimes players don't play because they haven't been training well. Beckham deserves to be on the pitch even if he is 37. I am very calm and very relaxed."

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.