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France Spoil Beckham's Landmark
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France Spoil Beckham's Landmark

Posted on March 27, 2008

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David Beckham won his 100th cap for England but had little cause to celebrate as a Franck Ribery penalty earned France victory in the friendly international in Paris.

Beckham picked up a yellow card and played for 63 minutes before leaving the pitch to a standing ovation from both sets of fans and being replaced by David Bentley.

Ribery struck from the spot in the 32nd minute after goalkeeper David James had brought down Nicolas Anelka to condemn Fabio Capello to his first setback as England boss.

After the game Beckham insisted he doesn’t want it to be 100 and out.

“I’m very honoured,” Beckham told Sky Sports 1. “Straight from when I started playing for England I never dreamed I’d get 100 caps, and hopefully beyond.

“I’m happy but like I said during the week I want to carry on. Of course things can change but I want to carry on playing for my country.”

This was the Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder’s first competitive match of the year because Major League Soccer is still in the off-season, and Beckham was pleased with his showing after being omitted from the squad for Fabio Capello’s first match against Switzerland.

“I’ve proved my fitness, that’s the biggest thing,” he added. “We’re not into our season yet but I felt great, I felt a lot better than I thought I would.”

The 32-year-old is now only eight caps short of World Cup-winning captain Bobby Moore, who holds the record for most appearances by an outfield player.

Beckham, though, claimed his focus is not on trying to beat Moore, saying: “Just to go over the 100 mark is a proud moment.

“To be up there with Bobby Moore, Bobby Charlton, Billy Wright and Peter Shilton, I’m honoured to be in that company.”

Capello was pleased by the way his side played.

“I’m actually quite happy because I have seen improvements,” he added on Sky Sports 1.

“We played against a top-level team and I think we did well.”

As for why he was so pleased, the Italian said: “The way we played, we didn’t let the opposition play too much and especially, the way we played with personality.

“We did especially well in the first half, but unfortunately we conceded the penalty, the goal.”

As for Beckham, the Italian said: “Yes I saw him well, he was fit and could have carried on playing. I subbed him because I needed to see other players as well.”

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