David Beckham tributes

Reaction to David Beckham announcing he will retire from football at the end of the season.

Last Updated: 16/05/13 at 20:04 Post Comment   

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England manager Roy Hodgson: "I wish him well in the future whatever he chooses to do and I personally hope that will be in football. David is a man of many talents and a lot of people now will be wanting him for different jobs and roles, some of which could take him away from us in football. But I'm rather hoping we'll be able to keep him in football because we can really benefit from his experience, we can really benefit from his charisma and we certainly benefit from the magnificent past he has had as a football player. In David Beckham England have a very big fan and a very great supporter.'' Sky Sports News

Former Manchester United and England team-mate Gary Neville: "He just feel it's the right time. He just feels he's taken it as far as he can. He wanted to come back home, he's been away for 22 years and he's got to the end of the road. He's won another championship at PSG, that's four in four countries, and he just wants to come home. You look at it and think 'wow', he's got an incredible array of caps and medals, an incredible longevity. He played in the greatest midfield I've ever played with: David, Ryan Giggs, Roy Keane and Paul Scholes. David was a crosser of the ball, a passer of the ball. He had incredible stamina and energy. He was a joy to play with. And when you think back on the way football has changed over the last 22 years, he has probably been the most influential player in that time out of England in terms of transforming football. In leaving the country, to Milan, LA, Paris, he has transported England around the world and that's something he was aware of and wanted to do. Every clothing garment he wore, every hairstyle was followed - not just in football but out of football. That's why you see him working as an ambassador for the Olympics.'' Sky Sports News

Former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson: "He is a fantastic footballer and a fantastic person. All over the world you say 'David Beckham' and people know who that is. I don't think any other football player is more popular than he.'' BBC Radio Five Live

Former England manager Steve McClaren: "He was a great player. He made the very most of his talents through sheer hard work and professionalism and always doing extra work on the training field. He inspired his team-mates through his performances. He was a winner, he's won so many things in his career, and that was infectious on his team-mates. And he was an inspiring personality to young players with his behaviour and professionalism on and off the field. But ultimately he was a leader and people followed him. The young players followed him in how he played and in his personality, and even off the field the young players of today are following him through his fashion. By the end of his career he was a fantastic ambassador, not only for football around the world but for our country as well in helping bring major events to this country. He has been very special in that right midfield position. He was an unbelievable passer, crosser of the ball, and he could score goals as well. My lasting memory of David Beckham is him continuously being the last off the training pitch and always practising those trademark free-kicks." Sky Sports News

Former England caretaker manager Peter Taylor: "I went with David (to be captain) because of his determination to succeed and it worked out to be a great decision in the end. He took the role on and continually improved as a player and as a captain. You could see that he became more and more confident with the armband every game. David being David, he was always going to take the role seriously and do things correctly and that's exactly what he did. It was something that he'd wanted to do and he had earned that opportunity. I'm pleased it worked out so well for him.'' theFA.com

Former England captain Terry Butcher: "The name David Beckham generates great interest as he is a legend and an icon. He has been a fantastic ambassador for football, not only in England but all around the world; he is a fan's player and wherever he goes he captures the supporters' and media's attention. His legs may have gone lately but he produced some fantastic memories for England and that goal against Greece [to take England into the 2002 World Cup] sends shivers down my spine every time I think about it. He took responsibility as a footballer and is a great role model - and he was a pin-up for all the girls, too; my former Motherwell defender Stephen Craigan told me he had the most immaculate face of any man he had ever seen when he played for Northern Ireland against England a few years ago!" Sky Sports News

FA chairman David Bernstein: "In the week following Sir Alex Ferguson retiring, which came as a bit of a shock, now we have the iconic David Beckham coming out of the game. It's unexpected even though he is getting to mature years for a footballer. He is an iconic figure in the game and produced wonderful performances for his clubs, particularly Manchester United. When you look at his playing and work for England, no one would ever accuse him of being unpatriotic and not giving everything for his country. He is a real loss to the game and I am sure the FA will want to embrace him and to get him closely associated with the organisation. I would personally wish him every luck and success - he will be quite a loss to the game."

British Olympic Association Chair Lord Sebastian Coe: "It is impossible to think about the success of the London 2012 Games and not reflect upon the extraordinary commitment made by David Beckham. At every stage of the London 2012 journey - from the bid phase, to planning for the Games, to the torch relay and the unforgettable summer of sport in 2012, David was a constant source of support and inspiration. David is immensely proud of his Northeast London roots and readily understood the role the Games could play in transforming the lives of young people. His impact across football - and all of sport - will be felt for generations to come.''

FIFA president Sepp Blatter: "David Beckham, one of the most iconic figures in global football is retiring from playing. It's the end of a chapter of an amazing story. David grew up as a football-loving child & achieved his dreams, and unquestionably inspired millions of boys & girls to try & do the same. Whatever he chooses to do next I'm sure he'll approach with the same dedication & good grace he displayed the last 21 years. Good Luck!" Twitter

Former England team-mate Michael Owen: "Everyone seems to be retiring at once! Fantastic career Becks, congratulations." Twitter

Former Manchester United and England team-mate Phil Neville: "David Beckham - what an unbelievable career - 4 titles in 4 countries over 100 caps for England and the best ambassador this countries has had!" Twitter

Former England striker Gary Lineker: "David Beckham has retired. A wonderful player, global superstar and a magnificent ambassador for England and football." Twitter


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