Ronaldinho will share free kicks with Beckham

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The Independent Football

Ronaldinho will share free kick-taking duties with David Beckham when the England midfielder joins AC Milan on loan from Los Angeles Galaxy in January.

"He's a great champion. I hope he's happy with us. We'll take turns taking free kicks," the Brazil forward told Friday's La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"I've met him in the past and I have always been struck by his class."

The 33-year-old Beckham is moving to Milan to keep up his fitness during the American close season and stay in contention for an England squad place.

Milan said earlier this week the former Real Madrid and Manchester United player will join them on 7 January.

However, Italian media reported that he is likely to be presented as a Milan player in December and take part in a training camp in Dubai during Serie A's Christmas break.

The exact duration of the loan has not yet been revealed although Beckham has said he will return to Los Angeles for the start of the new MLS season in late March.

"No one has spoken of a permanent transfer. This hypothesis is not possible because he has a contract with Galaxy, who don't want to let him go," Milan chief executive Adriano Galliani said.

"I hope it's a painful goodbye (at the end of the loan) because that would mean he's done well."

Galliani said Milan wanted Beckham, one of world's most famous and marketable athletes, for footballing reasons, not commercial ones.

But he added that the club were studying ways to profit from the arrival of Beckham, who has won 107 England caps.

"Milan's marketing department is already working with Beckham's to develop initiatives," he said.