'He is too much like a pop star'

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The Independent Football

"Manchester United will go on. The club has never been built on just one player. We got over the George Best era and we will get over the David Beckham one," declared United fan David Hill as he watched the game on television with 60 other fans at the Bishops and Blaize pub just round the corner from Old Trafford.

"I was getting fed up with the fuss surrounding him. But he has served the club well and the fans will wish him success in Madrid," said Mr Hill.

No one seemed to lament Beckham's departure as they watched his debut for Real Madrid. Instead Steve Jackson lamented the player's superstar celebrity: "He is too much like a pop star."

Gary Sampson had his own view as to why the relationship between player and club had soured. "It's down to Victoria Beckham. As soon as he met her that was his downfall at United."

Though some affection for Beckham may still be there, there is one moment some fans are awaiting with almost sadistic pleasure. It is when he attempts his first interview in Spanish. "He didn't even speak English too well," one fan cruelly joked.

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