Madrid, Beckham negotiate contract

Real Madrid has begun negotiating with David Beckham over a new contract.

updated: February 25, 2007 11:36 IST
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Real Madrid has begun negotiating with David Beckham over a new contract. The club's sports director Predrag Mijatovic said he was confident the talks will lead to Beckham staying at Madrid beyond June, when his current deal expires. News reports have suggested that Madrid is offering a two-year contract, tying the midfielder to Madrid until he is 34. "I have had a meeting with his agent. We are happy with him (Beckham) and we want to renew his contract. I don't think there will be any problems," Mijatovic told El Pais on Wednesday. Beckham will be free to negotiate with other clubs if he hasn't renewed by January. Mijatovic responded to reports that Beckham is demanding a rise in his share of image rights from 50 per cent to 80 per cent. "But who is talking about paying him more? Perhaps he will stay and earn less," Mijatovic said. The negotiations have come at a time when Beckham is finding it hard to make Madrid's first team. He has been dropped by coach Fabio Capello for the last four games although each time he has appeared as a second-half substitute. Beckham has also been dropped by England. Mijatovic said Beckham, who hasn't won a major trophy with Madrid since arriving from Manchester United in 2003, would help Madrid "more than ever". "The fact he hasn't been in the starting lineup doesn't mean he's not going to be. Capello wants to rotate his players," Mijatovic said. Meanwhile, Madrid president Ramon Calderon told the British Broadcasting Corp. that he expected Beckham to retire in two years' time. "It would be fantastic if he would stay with us for the next two years," Calderon said. "We need him. He's playing very well. The coach trusts him. We hope everything will be arrived at in the next 15 to 20 days to sign the new contract." (AP)