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By ESPN Staff
Feb 7, 2008

Lalas thrilled by Premier League plans

Los Angeles Galaxy general manager Alexei Lalas believes the Premier League's proposal to play matches overseas is an exciting one.

The 20 clubs have agreed to further examine a plan to play an extra round of games in cities across the world from the 2010-11 season.

'I look on this as an opportunity for our fans to get first-hand experience of what the level is in England,' Lalas told Sky Sports News.

'I see it as a great way to pit our level against what is perceived as the greatest league in the world.

'Teams have come here on tours for years, America is recognised as an emerging market, but the competition wasn't there so to see teams in meaningful games is great for the spectators.'

Lalas did cast doubt on the level of interest in matches not involving the high-profile sides.

'There has to be a realistic approach in relation to the economics,' he said. 'Just because it's an English Premier League team doesn't mean thousands of people will come out and watch it.'

Los Angeles has been suggested as a possible venue following David Beckham's move to Galaxy, and Lalas believes it would be a success

'Obviously, LA would be a huge pull and we would certainly want to partner up with teams we thought would be appropriate,' he said.

Lalas, however, was less than complimentary about England boss Fabio Capello's decision not to include Beckham in his squad to face Switzerland yesterday.

The former captain spent time training with Arsenal ahead of the match as he sought to win his 100th cap but Capello decided not to pick him because it is Major League Soccer's off-season.

Lalas said: 'Probably the decision he wasn't game-fit could have been delivered earlier so he didn't bust his gut over at Arsenal.'