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Home > India > Sports > Olympics 2008 > Report

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Beckham says football still No 1

August 24, 2008 16:07 IST


David Beckham

Football will always be the world's number one sport, England's [Images] David Beckham [Images] said at the Beijing [Images] Olympics [Images].

"Obviously for me, it's the best sport in the world, so I think it should always be top of the list," Beckham said on a visit for the closing of the Games on Sunday.

Beckham was on a plane when Argentina beat Nigeria on Saturday to take an Olympic gold, so he missed the sight of both sets of players wilting in the midday sun.

The teams suffered from a noon start in the main Bird's Nest stadium because athletics take precedence in the evening.

That symbolised the second-class status of football in the Games. It is restricted to under-23 teams, though each side can field up to three over-age players. World governing body FIFA does not want Olympics football to overshadow its own World Cup.

"Obviously, it's still important, there are still great players and great teams performing over here. So at the end of the day it's still my Number One sport whether it's looked at as different," Beckham told Reuters and the Press Association.

Argentina did at least feature well-known players on the international stage like Lionel Messi [Images] and Juan Roman Riquelme, while Brazil [Images], who took bronze, had Ronaldinho [Images].

Beckham said it was understandable football could not always hog the limelight. "There are so many other great sports in the Olympics, so many other great athletes that have worked so hard to get here," he said.

With London [Images] to host the 2012 Olympics, some fans have been wondering if Beckham might make a swansong appearance.

"Maybe. I'll be 37 then so I'm not sure I'll still be playing. But you never know," he said.

"At the end of the day, I'm just going to be happy to be involved. I'm very proud to be involved as being British and also from the East End of London. I will definitely be there. Whether it will be playing or not, I'm not so sure about that one."


  • Complete coverage: Beijing 2008 Olympic Games
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