David Beckham could hardly contain his excitement when he was told of his recall to the England side on Saturday, said Real Madrid team mate Ruud van Nistelrooy.
"He was delighted, he was so happy with the news," the Dutchman told reporters after Real Madrid's 3-1 victory over Deportivo Coruna at the Bernabeu.
"Everyday leading up to it, we were talking about it and counting down the days to the announcement. It's so good to see a professional who has been through everything in the game and is so pleased to be called up for his country again.
"For me, only the true greats can have an attitude like that."
Dropped from the England squad when he stepped down as England captain after the World Cup, Beckham was recalled by manager Steve McClaren for a friendly against Brazil and the Euro 2008 qualifier against Estonia.
"It's a great feeling and I'm so happy for David," said Van Nistelrooy who also played alongside Beckham at Manchester United.
"He's turned it round himself by his mentality and qualities and many players would have said 'this is it for me' and he didn't and he deserves the credit for it. He's a player that belongs in the national team."
Beckham celebrated his return with another impressive performance for Real and had a hand in two of Real's three goals.
"The way he's playing is fantastic," said Van Nistelrooy. "He puts crosses in like only he can. I told him we need him for next season. We'll miss him. Maybe they'll loan him out to us next season."
The striker said he too was delighted that Netherlands coach Marco van Basten had rung him this week to tell him he was now back in the reckoning for the Dutch squad once again.
"I'm so happy that van Basten rang me again and that I convinced him that I'm still there among the best in the game," he said.
The Dutchman, who took his tally for the season to 23 goals with Real's third against Depor, admitted that his assist for his side's opener had been a handball.
"It was a clear handball, but I was lucky the ref didn't see it," he said.