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Real escape with hope of progress

What the papers say
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By ESPN Staff

Rijkaard disagrees with Capello's bar on Beckham

MADRID, Jan 16 (Reuters) - Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard said he did not agree with Fabio Capello's policy of barring David Beckham from playing for Real Madrid after the midfielder decided to leave the club for LA Galaxy.

'In theory I wouldn't sideline the player,' Rijkaard was reported as saying in daily Sport on Tuesday. 'You always have to look to the interests of the team.

'Everyone wants to win things and if a player has a contract he can still keep on working.'

Rijkaard was in a similar position to Capello when Swede Henrik Larsson agreed a move to home town club Helsingborg in February last year.

Despite the striker announcing the move and donning his new team's shirt, Larsson continued to feature regularly at Barcelona and played a decisive role in their victory over Arsenal in the Champions League final.

Rijkaard has used striker Javier Saviola despite the fact the club has been anxious to offload the Argentine on several occasions.

With Beckham, Ronaldo and Antonio Cassano all sidelined by Capello and Raul, Emerson, Guti, Roberto Carlos and Marcelo injured, the Italian may have to use several reserves for the King's Cup last 16 second leg tie with Real Betis on Thursday.