US coach Bradley praises Beckham's 'quality'
USA coach Bob Bradley was delighted to see at least one member of the England side play a major role in the hosts' 2-0 friendly win at Wembley last night.
While Bradley was understandably disappointed at the defeat, especially after a spectacular three-goal triumph over Poland at the weekend, he can also see a much bigger picture.
And to have David Beckham wearing an England shirt, as a player from Major League Soccer outfit Los Angeles Galaxy, offers immeasurable positive publicity to the fledgling American competition.
'It is important for the MLS that David Beckham continues to play well enough to get included in squads and then can still produce for England,' said Bradley.
'His play for the LA Galaxy this season has been better than it was last year.
'He had a few injuries and while maybe it is not La Liga or the Premier League, it is still different.
'This year he has played well and he certainly brings quality to the England side.'
Bradley confirmed Beckham's club colleague Landon Donovan had missed out on a 100th cap with a tight hamstring and, with his club side LA Galaxy due to play Toronto at the weekend, is now almost certain to miss Saturday's clash with Spain.
'We have been jiggling the MLS players around a little bit,' said Bradley.
'It is difficult for the players, with some coming and others going but the opportunity of having three matches on the trot like this does not come around very often.'
Bradley admitted England had 'raised the bar' at Wembley.
It seems bizarre therefore that Poland will be at Euro 2008 and England will not, which Bradley admits is something of a surprise.
'Sometimes football can be crazy,' he said.
'Poland had a very good run through qualifying but I think everyone recognises the talent the England team possesses.'
And Bradley had nothing but praise for man of the match Steven Gerrard, who still made a goalscoring contribution to England's victory despite being stationed on the left wing.
'Gerrard did a good job coming inside and finding the ball,' said Bradley.
'His movement was very good and I give him a lot of credit for England's victory.
'I have seen him play a lot of different roles and time will tell what his best one is.
'But he was still able to dominate the match from where he was.'