[QODLink]
Sport
Pele warns Beckham
The Brazilian superstar tells David Beckham to be ready to work hard.
Last Modified: 12 Jul 2007 09:55 GMT

David and Victoria Beckham: Part football, part media circus, part Hollywood glamour [GALLO/GETTY]

Football superstar Pele, whose arrival into American Major League Soccer saw a surge in interest when he joined the New York Cosmos in the 1970s, believes that David Beckham can help promote the game but had better be prepared to work hard.
 
Beckham will be officially unveiled as an LA Galaxy player on Friday.
The 32 year old, who spent four years in pain with Real Madrid, has caused a media storm since announcing his decision to move to the USA.
 
"Everybody knows David Beckham is a good player. He's very well known all over the world and I think he could help soccer in the United States," said Pele.

Pele, however, had a word of caution for Beckham, noting the standard of play in the United States had grown considerably since his pioneering days.

"But I advise him ... it will be very difficult to play because the teams are very good. They mark very well. Be prepared, be in good condition because it is not easy to play in the United States. The football is now at a high level.

"In my time it was a little different. It was more complicated," the triple World Cup winner said.

"I came here to start (the professional game). The football here was just amateur and college. The football has grown a lot over here.

"I had the opportunity to play with great players -- (Franz) Beckenbauer, Carlos Alberto, Giorgio Chinaglia, (Johan) Cruyff. This motivated the kids, the people, to come into the game.

"Now Beckham has to continue the work."

The Brazilian suggested Beckham just might bring the right mix of celebrity and skill to accomplish the mission in America, whose national team has reached the last five World Cups.

"He is one of the players in the last 10 years who has most promoted himself and the football," Pele said with a laugh.

"Since he left England for Real Madrid, it's always like this. His wife is an entertainer, she was a singer. This made Beckham now become a showman."

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
Featured
Booming global trade in 50-million-year-old amber stones is lucrative, controversial, and extremely dangerous.
Legendary Native-American High Bird was trained in ancient warrior traditions, which he employed in World War II.
Hounded opposition figure says he's hoping for the best at sodomy appeal but prepared to return to prison.
Fears of rising Islamophobia and racial profiling after two soldiers killed in separate incidents.
Group's culture of summary justice is back in Northern Ireland's spotlight after new sexual assault accusations.