BECKHAM: THE KIDS WILL HAVE A KICK, 'BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM'

MANILA, DECEMBER 2, 2011 (STAR) By Olmin Leyba (Photo is loading... Football’s glamour boy David Beckham (third from left) poses with LA Galaxy teammate Landon Donovan (second from left) and Philippine Azkals mainstays (from left) Ali Borromeo, Chieffy Caligdong and brothers James and Phil Younghusband during yesterday’s press conference launching the Galaxy-Azkals match as part of the LA Galaxy Asia-Pacific Tour. JUN MENDOZA)

More than the friendly match with the Philippine Azkals, football glamour boy David Beckham of the LA Galaxy looks forward to mingling with kids to try to share them inputs on how to “bend it like Beckham.”

“I’m gonna try,” Beckham, looking dapper in a white Herbalife Galaxy shirt, said with a smile during yesterday’s well-attended press conference at the Shangri-La Hotel.

The 36-year-old Englishman has earned a reputation for his efficient swerving kicks on the pitch, complementing his movie star looks and marriage to fashion icon Victoria Beckham.

On the second stop of their Asia Pacific Tour presented by Herbalife, Beckham and the MLS champs Galaxy will conduct a football clinic for underprivileged kids from Payatas, Bantay Bata, Unicef, Futkaleros and other football-oriented charities today from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Rizal pitch.

“ I think every player’s got certain abilities. You know Landon Donovan, he’s good at finishing. For myself, it’s obviously my free kick and corners. It’s something that worked for me through the years,” he said.

“I know my strengths and weaknesses and I work on both of them. It’s something that we can teach kids,” said Beckham, whose team will battle the Philippine Azkals in what they considered a tough match tomorrow night at the Rizal Memorial Football Stadium.

JFootball superstar David Beckham arrives at the NAIA yesterday for tomorrow’s match between the Philippine Azkals and the Los Angeles Galaxy. RUDY SANTOS

Beckham was joined in the pre-match presser by Galaxy coach Bruce Arena, Donovan, and an obviously excited Azkals team led by Chieffy Caligdong, Phil and James Younghusband, captain Aly Borromeo, coach Michael Weiss and team manager Dan Palami, along with PFF president Nonong Araneta.

Highlight of the affair was the exchange of jerseys by the Azkals (in blue shade) and Galaxy (white).

The bearded Beckham and his companions at the presidential table, Arena and Donovan, also shared their views on playing for flag.

“Obviously, I’m very proud to play for my country and I’d love to be part of the Great Britain team especially in the London Olympics next year,” said Beckham a former England skipper.

Arena, one of the most successful coaches in the US national team history, advised the Phl Azkals to “work hard, be proud of what playing for the national team and a lot of things can happen.”

“We were once a small country in football. We chased a dream, we started to qualify in the World Cup on a regular basis, and now we’re a big country in the sport. There’s no reason why you can’t do it here,” he said.

US standout Donovan stressed the importance of maintaining a competitive football league to sustain a deep pool of talents for the national team.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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