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Oct 22, 2008

Beckham set for winter-long AC Milan loan

David Beckham could soon be playing in Serie A for Italian giants AC Milan if the club are successful in a bid to land the Los Angeles Galaxy star on loan.

The former England captain is determined to keep his place in the national team and a spell on loan in Europe during the Major League Soccer close season could be beneficial.

On Wednesday Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani said he was confident that Beckham would arrive at the San Siro, however it is understood the 33-year-old has yet to commit to the deal, which, if confirmed, is expected to begin in January.

Questioned by reporters at Milan's Malpensa airport, Galliani said: ''We are speaking with his agent but we believe he will arrive for some months on a free loan.''

''Beckham has chosen Milan. Our squad is ultra-competitive and it will remain this way, but Beckham is something different and intriguing.''

Beckham is under contract with L.A. Galaxy but their regular season finishes on Sunday after the club failed to reach the MLS's end of season play-offs; however Beckham would not be available immediately because of his key role in Galaxy's forthcoming promotional tour of Australia and New Zealand. Even so, with the transfer window closed, Milan are unable to sign Beckham until the turn of the year.

Last weekend Galliani said that Beckham would be invited to train with Milan during the coming months in order retain his fitness and remain part of Fabio Capello's plans for the England national side, much as he did last season when he trained with Arsenal.

However, while Arsenal never sought to field Beckham in a competitive game, Milan are hoping to capitalise on the availability of the dead-ball specialist.

It is not the first time Beckham had been linked with the Rossoneri, with contact thought to have been made between the player's representatives and Milan before the player left Real Madrid for the United States in 2007.

Milan head coach Carlo Ancelotti has given the blessing for the former Manchester United midfielder to join up with his squad to provide more competition for places and is looking forward to working with Beckham, who won his 107th England cap in the World Cup qualifying victory over Belarus last week.

Ancelotti told the club's website:''For me it will be a pleasure, Beckham is a serious athlete, a great professional. If he is available for four months with us, we will be very happy.''

England boss Fabio Capello has been pleased with Beckham's contribution this year, although he has recently been a fringe member of the squad.

If Beckham moves to Milan - Capello's former club - then he will have the chance to demonstrate in Serie A that he remains a world-class player. Regular club football would almost certainly help his England prospects.

England have a busy start to 2009. They have a probable friendly against Spain lined up for February, a home friendly against Slovakia in March, plus World Cup qualifiers against Ukraine in April, and Kazakhstan and Andorra in June.

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