Fifa congratulate England captain for role as 'ambassador'

Click to follow
The Independent Football

David Beckham revealed yesterday that Sepp Blatter, the president of Fifa, football's world governing body, had written to congratulate him on being "an ambassador for the sport" in the wake of last month's controversy over the England captain's suspension for the World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan.

David Beckham revealed yesterday that Sepp Blatter, the president of Fifa, football's world governing body, had written to congratulate him on being "an ambassador for the sport" in the wake of last month's controversy over the England captain's suspension for the World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan.

Beckham had admitted deliberately getting himself booked against Wales because he knew he had injured his ribs and would miss the Azerbaijan match anyway. On being shown his second yellow card of the qualifying tournament - for a pre-meditated foul on Ben Thatcher - Beckham was automatically suspended for the following game.

The Football Association investigated the incident after Blatter and others expressed concern, but took no action. Beckham said yesterday: "I made my public apology. I made my apology to the FA. I apologised to Fifa. I got a nice letter back from Sepp Blatter. Fifa and the FA have drawn a line under it and so have I.

"He [Blatter] said: 'You've been an ambassador for the sport for so many years and you've always conducted yourself in the right way and good luck for the future.' That was it. He didn't refer to the incident. He just said I've been an ambassador for the game and to be honest that's what I want to be known as at the end of my career. I want to be known as a great ambassador for world and English football."

When asked about the comments of Sir Geoff Hurst, who said that Sir Alf Ramsey, manager of England's 1966 World Cup winners, would not have tolerated such behaviour, Beckham replied: "I don't want to get into personal things with ex-players and ex-England players. That's not what I'm all about. I'm very professional. I'm very respectful of all professionals, whether ex-players or playing. I respect him as a player and as a person."

When asked whether he would do the same thing again, the England captain replied: "I've moved on. So have the FA and Fifa."

Comments