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Europa League round of 16 draw

Europa League
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By ESPN Staff

Madrid coach defends Beckham after red card

MADRID -- Real Madrid coach Fabio Capello defended David Beckham after the midfielder was sent off in the 0-0 home draw with Real Betis in the Primera Liga on Saturday.

The former England captain lost his cool after being dispossessed in the Betis area, chasing back and lunging into a challenge from behind on Isidro.

"We have had little help from referees this year. It was a foul in favor of Beckham (moments before) and I think the referee was a little quick to flash a red card," Capello told reporters.

"I've seen it on television and I don't think it merited a red card."

It was Beckham's fifth dismissal with Madrid and the eighth of his career.

Capello brought the former Manchester United player back into the team last weekend when he scored in the 2-1 win at Real Sociedad.

The Italian had banished Beckham to the stands early in January after he announced he was joining Los Angeles Galaxy at the end of the season.