Friday Kickoff: Beckham hints at PSG stay, Benitez has owners backing, and more

BY DAN KARELL

David Beckham’s stay in Paris may not end when the current season finishes in May.

During a promotional event for Adidas in the French capital, The Englishman hinted that he may want to stay with Paris Saint-Germain into next season. In response to a question about his contract going longer than five months, Beckham said “not yet it doesn’t.”

Beckham also claimed that him and his wife both have been taken aback by their reception in Paris, saying everyone has welcomed them in with open arms. The 37-year-old made his first start for the Parisian club on Wednesday, playing 86 minutes in central midfield during a 2-0 Coupe de France victory over Marseille.

Here are some more stories to start your Friday:

RAFA BENITEZ STILL HAS OWNER’S BACKING, DESPITE FAN CRITICISM

Rafa Benitez’s post-match tirade on Wednesday may have not helped him make any friends with the Chelsea supporters, but the Spaniard has insisted he isn’t going anywhere for the time being, describing his relationship with owner Roman Abramovich as “excellent.”

When Benitez took over Chelsea on November 22, he probably never thought that Chelsea fans would be as vocal about their disapproval in the former Liverpool boss’ appointment. Following the 2-0 FA Cup victory on Wednesday, Benitez said that those fans were the ones damaging the club, not him.

Chelsea return to Stamford Bridge on Saturday to face West Bromwich Albion, where Benitez is sure to face a hostile reception.

GIGGS SIGNS ON FOR ANOTHER SEASON

The iron man of soccer just won’t quit.

This morning, Ryan Giggs signed a one-year contract extension with Manchester United, the only club he has known, through 2014, which will see him play through his 40th birthday.

Giggs is set to make his one thousandth appearance in competitive matches when his club takes on Norwich on Saturday. Giggs’ appearance totals are split between Manchester United, Wales, and Team GB from this past summer’s Olympics.

The 39-year-old Welshman, who has a British record 12 Premier League titles, has scored five goals in twenty matches in all competitions for Manchester United this season.

LIBERTAD GOES TOP OF GROUP 2 IN COPA LIBERTADORES

Rounding off another busy, yet exciting week of Copa Libertadores action, Paraguayan club Libertad defeated Brazilian side Palmeiras 2-0, in a match that highlighted Thursday’s slate of games.

Libertad scored both goals off headers through open play, with the first coming from Pablo Velasquez in the 11th minute, and the second coming 10 minutes into the second half via the head of Pedro Benitez, eerily close to mirroring the first half’s effort, but at the other end of the pitch.

With the win, Libertad jumps to the top of Group 2 with six points from their first two games, followed by Sporting Cristal, Palmeiras, and Tigre in last position.

Speaking of Sporting Cristal and Tigre, those two sides met up on Thursday in Lima, Peru, with Sporting defeating their Argentinian counterparts 2-0 at home. Goals on either side of halftime from Renzo Sheput in the 30th minute, and Carlos Lobaton in the 58th minute condemned Tigre to their second straight defeat in the competition.

Also in action on Thursday night, Brazilian club Sao Paulo defeated The Strongest of Bolivia 2-1, with the Brazilian side coming back from an early 1-0 deficit. Newly returned Brazilian national team striker Luis Fabiano scored the game-winning goal off a square pass from teammate Ganso, giving Sao Paulo their first win in Group 3.

QUICK KICKS

AC Milan forward Stephan El Shaarawy has signed a new contract with the Rossoneri through 2018. (REPORT)

Borussia Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp has created controversy in Germany by attributing Bayern Munich’s 1-0 win over his side due to Munich’s absorbent spending policies. (REPORT)

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed he would like a director’s role in the front office, when he finally steps down as manager. (REPORT)

Chelsea are considering the likes of former Blues players Gus Poyet, currently at Brighton and Hove Albion, and Gianfranco Zola, currently at Watford, to take over for Rafael Benitez in the summer. (REPORT)

Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen has insisted his side aren’t thinking about the revenge factor, as they prepare to face rivals Arsenal on Sunday. (REPORT)

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What do you think of these reports? Do you see Beckham staying at PSG past this summer? Do you believe that Benitez will finish the season at Chelsea? Where do you believe Ryan Giggs stands in the greatest British footballers of all time?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in European Soccer, Featured, South American Soccer. Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to Friday Kickoff: Beckham hints at PSG stay, Benitez has owners backing, and more

  1. 556bb says:

    Beckham plays 2 matches with a total of like 105mins and suddenly has dreams of staying beyond his 4-5month contract and PSG actually want him? Sounds to me they wanna sell those jerseys

    • Al17 says:

      The initial contract was supposed to be for 18 months, so this isn’t a surprise nor is it an all of a sudden idea. As a longtime PSG fan (since the 80’s) I have no issues with him being on the team. He wants to be there and has shown that he’s willing to give it all he can. No problem with it and a number of PSG supporters are fine with him being there. If it helps sells jerseys so much the better and nothing wrong with it. If you saw Wednesday’s match, he showed that he’s still a very good footballer…so what’s the problem. Guy has played in leagues throughout the world and has proven himself everywhere he’s played and won. He’s more than welcomed at PSG and in Ligue 1…look up quotes from both teammates and foes and more than a few of these guys are not into sugar coating things when it comes to their opinion.

  2. 556bb says:

    why wont Giggs and Scholes just retire? They are not allowing the younger players time to push fr a starting spot

    • Chuck says:

      If younger players want a starting spot then they should go out and earn one.

    • ed - houston says:

      Seriously, why are you second guessing one of the best managers and coaching staff.

      • juan sebastian says:

        yeah, didn’t you know? if fergie does something, it’s right!

        • Gnarls says:

          12 league wins (going on 13), 5 FA Cups, 4 League Cups, 2 Champions League wins, and a whole heap of other honors. So yeah, usually when Fergie does something, it is right.

          • juan sebastian says:

            have people already forgotten about veron? thought the joke would work without adding the last name.

          • juan sebastian says:

            and yes, i’m aware of his accomplishments.

            my exaggerated comment (with hilarious username) was supposed to be a contrast to ed’s extreme comment positing that, because someone’s been successful, they shouldn’t ever be questioned.

    • Gnarls says:

      Leadership is a valuable commodity. And have you seen Giggs and Scholes play? They’re still very important players.

    • patrick says:

      considering the fact that last year ferguson has to practically beg Scholes to come back, I’m not sure there’s anyone else even in the conversation

  3. Brain Guy says:

    Gee, it sounds like Ligue 1 is just a retirement league for old guys who want a nice lifestyle.

  4. AC says:

    Giggs is the man. Funny how people want him to retire. Well, then the younger players should step up and supplant him. Age is just a number nowadays. If you still got it, you got it. Giggs isn’t flashy and never was but does something called GETTING THE JOB DONE. I’d take him on my team any day, no matter the age, if he still has it.

    • 556bb says:

      the dude that banged his brother’s wife? SURE hahahaah

      • Nate Dollars says:

        that doesn’t change the fact that he’s a good player.

        now if you want to point out the idiocy of those who call him ‘classy’, i’m all for it.

      • AC says:

        Haha…Good point, but I’m talking about an older, veteran player still playing at that level he’s at…..If they still have it, why not keep going

  5. Johnathan says:

    Ives, how have you not reported The Martins deal??/ SERIOUSLY??? Obafemi Martis is a BEAST

    • A says:

      This.

      One of the biggest signings in league history. They pulled a starting striker off a good team in the best league in the world.

      • m6 says:

        how much they paying him>

      • Old School says:

        I think that’s a bit of hyperbole.

        The guy is as talented as he is a mercenary and I don’t see the effort that should go along with his ability on a consistent basis.

        • A says:

          He was purchased two years ago for 22 million dollars.

          He’s started, played and done well with Inter, Newcastle, Wolfsburg and Rubin Kazan.

          His goal scoring is one of the main reasons Levante has had such a good start to the league season and he was scoring in almost 40% of his appearances in La Liga. That’s really good. He’s in his prime still.

          He’s easily, far and away, one of the best signings in league history.

    • juan sebastian says:

      i believe he usually waits until he has the details of the deal before posting about it; maybe that’s the reason for the wait (has it even been confirmed by sounders yet?).

      that said, i think it immediately moves them to cup favorites with nyrb.

      • bryan says:

        exactly. it’s not a done deal yet but the reason everyone is talking about it is because martins said it was basically a done deal. but until it is, i imagine Ives won’t have an article on it. i thought it might be in an MLS notes area as a rumor, but they’re busy doing previews.

  6. Strider257 says:

    Hey, I’m just trying to figure out what “absorbent” spending policies are in soccer. IF you are talking about a mop I understand. I think you meant exorbitant.

  7. Old School says:

    How priceless is this hypocrisy?

    Gotta love Jurgen Klopp and Borussia Dortmund trying to make controversy over Bayern’s spending habits, all the while, stating to any interested suitor that Robert Lewandowski will go for no less than 30 million.

    Who’s interested and likely destinations?

    -Manchester United
    -………Bayern Munich

    • Old School says:

      It’s not ok for clubs to be spending that type of money. However, if it’s for one of our players….that’s cool.

  8. Chupacabra says:

    Headline, March 1, 2056

    80-year-old David Beckham signs 4-year contract with Chivas USA

    “I’m not dead yet,” said Beckham. “I feel happy!”

    *Oh, who am I kidding? There will be no Chivas USA in 2056.