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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Nov 22, 2007

Beckham says youngsters earn too much cash

'The nation is in mourning' over England's disastrous exit from Euro 2008, David Beckham said on Thursday, as he revealed he had been frightened of every manager - but not Steve McLaren. Multi-millionaire Beckham, 32, also said that young players were earning 'ridiculous' amounts of money. The former England captain who moved to LA Galaxy in a multi-million pound deal, said money had never been important to him. He admitted he may never play for his country again and that he was expecting a position as a Unicef ambassador. Beckham appeared on the recording of the Parkinson show a day after England crashed out of the tournament losing 3-2 to Croatia. Beckham said he would never be a manager and that it was 'extraordinary' that England had not lifted a major trophy since 1966. He said of last night's game: 'It wasn't pretty. It was frustrating, disappointing. The nation is in mourning and rightly so with the players we have got, the team we have got, the support we have got and always will have. 'Thousands of fans deserve to be celebrating to have flags on their cars and in their windows supporting our team.' Asked why the team has lifted nothing since 1966, Beckham said: 'It's extraordinary but football has changed a lot since '66. We had an amazing team that won us the World Cup. It's amazing that we haven't won it since with the amount of money in football and the players. 'It's truly incredible. It's what we work towards. We don't go, 'I can't wait to get back home to our big houses.' 'For me money never has anything to do with playing football. 'Of course people say it's easy for you to say that, obviously you've got the money,' he said. 'These days it's a lot easier for 16 and 17-year-old footballers to earn a ridiculous amount of money and not be controlled. 'Sir Alex Ferguson used to say: 'You will earn your money don't worry about that. Play for Manchester United. It's the best thing you will ever do.' He said he talked to some 'amazing kids' at his academy. 'One of the first things they ask you is how much money you earn. It's one of the first questions I get asked.' Parkinson joked of the infamous incident that Beckham would have got a boot thrown at him if he had asked Sir Alex that question. Beckham said: 'That was an accident.' But he added: 'I was scared of every manager that I ever had in my career,' starting with his dad. 'All the youngsters that went through Manchester United were all scared of Sir Alex Ferguson, that's how he got the best of our young players.' When Parkinson asked him whether he was scared of axed England boss McClaren he said: 'I'm a lot more grown up now. I'm aware, braver.' He said that McClaren had told him: 'You are a casualty,' when he decided to leave him out of the England squad for the first time. Beckham said: 'You either die and just go into a shell or you fight.' He said: 'Money is not important to me. It never has been. It never will be. I would play football for free.' He said his dream had been to end his career at Manchester United. Beckham said of his future: 'I'm definitely not giving up anything... I'm happy to have 99 caps but I want to reach 100. That would be a milestone. 'If I don't play for my country again I believe that I had a great career on the England side and I won't be retiring yet. 'I believe I have at least two or three years left. 'I could never be a manager.' Beckham said he wanted to continue being around his football academies and he was 'honoured to have received a letter from Kofi Annan asking me to be an ambassador for Unicef'. He said in January he will be travelling as part of that work and that he would like to do more charity work in his future career.

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