The standing ovation that Beckham accepted gracefully at Old Trafford on Tuesday as he and his teammates at AC Milan were humbled by the red soccer uniforms of Manchester United. Milan were a team of aged superstars with many of them in the twilight of their careers and will like be moving on to soccer pasture when Milan’s season draws to a close, more than likely without a single trophy to grace their cupboard. Among these tremendous players whose best years are far behind them are Dutchman Clarence Seedorf who holds the record of winning a Champions League trophy with three different clubs Ajax, Real Madrid and Inter Milan. Now 34, Seedorf’s career is very much on its last legs, and he looks unlikely to be included in the Dutch squad for this summer’s World Cup.
Another player with a rich history who won’t be going to South Africa with is Italian national squad is Milan legend Pipi Inzaghi. Inzaghi has been with Milan since 2001, joining them after a short and unsuccessful spell with Juventus. Fillipo (or Pippo as he became generally known) holds some very impressive records from his very successful records from his time at Milan, among them becoming the first player ever to score in all of the international club competitions. A possibly more impressive record that Inzaghi holds, but this jointly with Raúl of Real Madrid is the 68 goals scored in European club competitions with all clubs.. An indication of the striker’s significant contribution to Milan’s titanic soccer struggles in Europe is that he remains the team’s goal scorer in the club’s history with 39 goals. At 37, Pippo’s sporting legs, like Clarence Seedorf’s, appear to have deserted him, and it looks like both of these tremendous player’s will gradually wind down.
The likely end of David Beckham’s career sadly looks like being a lot more dramatic and painful than his two colleagues. Playing at Milan to keep himself in contention to be included in Capello’s World Cup squad, David suffered a rupture to his Achilles tendon in the last minute of their fairly uneventful single goal Series A win over Chievo on Sunday.
Beckham was on his run up to take yet another trademark free kick, when he suddenly pulled up. The look on this much loved superstar’s face told it all. The realisation that he wouldn’t be making it to his fourth World Cup finals and that’s his waning career had suffered a very severe blow.
The former Manchester United and Real Madrid ace, who is also England’s most-capped outfield player with 115 appearances, underwent surgery on his Achilles tendon the following day in far of Finland, With his foot liable to be in a cast for around six to eight weeks, the 35 years old’s World Cup dream is over.