David Beckham admits he could be left in the cold when England boss Fabio Capello picks his World Cup squad next summer.
Beckham this week played a central role in helping steer England's 2018 bid back on track, before participating in the draw for next summer's finals in Cape Town, but - with the likes of Theo Walcott, Aaron Lennon, Shaun Wright-Phillips and James Milner all in contention for the right midfield berth - the former captain acknowledges that his participation in the main event is not guaranteed.
The 34-year-old, who is set for a return to Serie A side AC Milan next month, said: "I do not fear being axed for the World Cup. If I don't make the squad it's not going to stop me supporting the team. Nothing is guaranteed, I have discovered that is true in my career. But if I can be part of it then it will be amazing."
He added: "Everybody knows how much I love playing for my country but the manager will pick a squad he thinks will win the competition. That has to be the way.
"If I am not part of that, of course I'd be upset but it is something I would still respect. It would be because the manager felt it was right in terms of his system and having the best players in the team.
"It still hurts that I was left out by Steve McClaren after I had resigned the captaincy but being picked for next summer is not something I take for granted.
"Going to Milan doesn't guarantee anything. It gives me a chance of being in the squad but it doesn't guarantee it."Reuse content