x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Beckham set for Dubai debut

David Beckham's AC Milan debut in Dubai moved a step closer as the Italian side confirmed he would be part of their training camp in the UAE.

AC Milan have announced that David Beckham will be part of their training camp in the UAE.
AC Milan have announced that David Beckham will be part of their training camp in the UAE.

David Beckham's AC Milan debut in Dubai moved a step closer as the Italian side confirmed he would be part of their training camp in the UAE. The former England captain will join Carlo Ancelotti's men when they come to the Emirates from Dec 29 until Jan 7. The trip will culminate with a match against Hamburg for the Dubai Football Challenge trophy on Tuesday Jan 6, at the new purpose-built facility known as 'The Sevens'. Beckham was not due to join Milan officially until the following day, but Adriano Galliani, the club's vice president, said the midfielder - on loan from Los Angeles Galaxy - will join players such as Kaka, Ronaldinho and Clarence Seedorf for the winter camp. And that could well lead to an appearance in the one-off game, which is sponsored by Emirates Airline and the Government of Dubai's Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM). Stuart Webb, chairman of the tournament's organisers, the World Series, said: "It is wonderful news that David Beckham will be part of the training camp and if he is fit and available for selection, then wouldn't it be great to see him make an appearance in the game? "It would be a great thrill for the Dubai Football Challenge, but, more importantly, for football fans in the UAE. Beckham is an icon and has appeal to people everywhere, football fans or not. We hope he will be part of this occasion." Beckham, 33, is joining Milan to keep fit in an attempt enable him to stay in the plans of England, with the coach Fabio Capello saying he will only pick those who have been playing regularly. That would not have been possible for Beckham with the break for the Major League season until March. Milan, doing well in Serie A, have been reported to be keen to sign him on a long-term basis, but Galliani added: "I want to make it clear that the club does not have any future projects for him. All we know is that he will come to Dubai and then he will return to Galaxy in March. Besides that nothing else.'' Milan have also quashed speculation that Andriy Shevchenko has been offered to Real Madrid. akhan@thenational.ae