Beckham looks beyond 100th appearance

David Beckham is set to make his 100th appearance for England, in a friendly against France. But he says he wants to carry on playing well.

updated: April 15, 2008 12:04 IST
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David Beckham is already looking past England's friendly against France on Wednesday.

The former England captain is hoping to make his 100th international appearance at Stade de France after being recalled by coach Fabio Capello, but isn't about to rest even if he reaches the milestone.

"As much as I'm honored to be here, I want it to carry on," Beckham said on Monday.

"It doesn't stop here for me. It's not about 'have your 100th game and then retire.' It's about carrying on trying to play well for my country."

Beckham sat out Capello's debut win over Switzerland last month because the coach ruled that he wasn't fit enough during the Major League Soccer off-season.

But Beckham has begun playing preseason friendlies for the Los Angeles Galaxy and could now become just the fifth Englishman to play a century of international matches.

Another cap would move him 25 short of goalkeeper Peter Shilton's England record.

Bobby Charlton, Bobby Moore and Billy Wright are the other former England players to have reached the century milestone.

The 32-year-old Beckham was dropped by Capello's predecessor, Steve Mclaren, after the 2006 World Cup and missed nine England matches. He was recalled a year later following a string of poor results.

Beckham remained in the team through the remainder of England's unsuccessful attempt to qualify for the European Championship, but missed out on Capello's first squad even though he was training with Arsenal in an effort to say fit.

"He's a really good player," Arsenal midfielder Mathieu Flamini said. "It was a pleasure to train with him. He's very fit, good technically."

But even if this match proves to be his last, Beckham will be happy.

"I never thought a year ago or two years ago that I would make 95 caps never mind 100," Beckham sad.

"I'm honored that I'm making hopefully, my 100th appearance in an England shirt, but I'm also honored to be doing it against one of the best teams in the world."