David Beckham moved closer to a loan move to Tottenham Hotspur last night, but if the deal breaks down he would rather train with the club than take up one of many offers to play at other European sides.
He is believed to have received approaches from teams in Spain, Italy, France and Turkey but is only really considering a move to a Premier League club, with Spurs the favourites as he has a home in Hertfordshire.
Los Angeles Galaxy are understood to be open to the two-month loan deal during the American Major League Soccer close season, but the terms of the move, which include payments for the use of Beckham's image and insurance against potential injury, have yet to be fully agreed.
Beckham has been told by England that an international recall is a possibility if he keeps himself in shape. The midfielder has 115 international caps, 10 short of goalkeeper Peter Shilton's England record. The England manager, Fabio Capello, said in August he considered Beckham, 35, to be "a little bit old".
A spokesman for Beckham yesterday said: "The loan is part of David's desire to keep fit and make himself available for England again. Spurs are one of many clubs interested – but we have not yet had detailed talks.
"At the moment we are waiting on the decision of LA Galaxy with regards to a loan move. The loan would be a short one until the start of the MLS season. David would then return and play a full season with the Galaxy." LA Galaxy spokesman Patrick Donnelly said: "We are not going to comment on this at this time."
If a deal is agreed, Beckham could play up to 11 games for Tottenham, including their Premier League match with Manchester United on 16 January. In 2008 Beckham trained with the Arsenal squad at their London Colney headquarters, while in 2009 and in 2010 he moved on loan to Milan. Beckham has played outside England since leaving Manchester United for Real Madrid in June 2003.
Robbie Keane could be leaving Tottenham in this month's transfer window after Birmingham City confirmed yesterday they are negotiating for the Republic of Ireland striker.
The Tottenham manager, Harry Redknapp, has made it clear he is happy for Keane to move on. The former Internazionale and Liverpool striker has scored only one goal in 13 games for Spurs, including just two starts this season.
The Birmingham manager, Alex McLeish, is desperate to strengthen his attacking options, with his side having scored 20 goals from 20 Premier League games. West Ham United and Newcastle United, both short of forward options, are also in the hunt for the 30-year-old striker, who has 104 international caps for the Republic.