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Interview: Beckham not giving up on playing for England yet

Last updated on: April 4, 2013 17:38 IST

'Paris is an amazing city, amazing culture'

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David Beckham sat down for an interview with CNN's Pedro Pinto this week, in which he looked ahead to the upcoming clash between PSG and Barcelona, talked of the pressures and pleasures of his new life in Paris, and the changing impact of his fame on his children.

- Beckham's Golden boots 

He also explained why he hasn't given up just yet on playing for England again.

This club is trying to become a European giant, and they are trying to do it very, very quickly. How would you describe the project here and how the people at the club convinced you to be part of it?

They didn't have to convince me too much. Being part of a club that is looking to the future and looking to become a bigger success than they have in the last few years. I wanted to be part of that. Especially with Carlo [Ancelotti] as the manager, and players like Zlatan [Ibrahimovic] and Lucas Moura and the other players that we've got throughout the team. To be asked to come and play here was obviously an honour and something that I was excited about. They have big plans at the club, and rightly so. Paris is an amazing city, amazing culture. This club has not been around for many years and the success that they want to achieve is do-able so is achievable.

Transcript courtesy: CNN World Sport


Image: David Beckham
Photographs: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

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'I've had the attention almost everywhere I've played'

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What do you think continues to make you so popular? What do you think people want from you all the time? Because no matter how long you go in your career, the attention doesn't stop.

I've had the attention almost everywhere I've played or everywhere I've gone, everywhere I've lived. The attention I've got used to. I know there are other things that come with me and that come with me coming to a club, but I think the thing that people always look at is the professionalism.

- Beckham's soccer journey: From Manchester to Paris

You've got a big, big tie against Barcelona, how can you beat them? Can you beat them?

Yeah without doubt they're one of the best teams ever. They've got some of the best players individually and collectively. I think that's what makes them the team they are. It's not about just [Lionel] Messi or Xavi, they have a unit that works together so well, that's why they've been successful over the years. Yes they've got the best player in the world in their team, they've got committed players and that's what makes them a special team. It's a huge test for us, it's a huge game for this club, for this city. It's exciting, we have to look at it as players as an exciting game and a huge challenge.


Image: David Beckham
Photographs: Lintao Zhang/Getty Images
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'I've never retired from the England team'

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You mentioned your family and I believe they are in London, you're here in Paris, you go back and forth all the time. How is it being back in Europe and being so close to London?

When you speak about the sacrifices, that's obviously the sacrifice that I have to make as a father and as a husband, being away from my family. It's only for a short time but it's difficult being away from the children every single day. But they understand it, they understand that Daddy works hard.

- PSG's Beckham proves he is not just a marketing tool

Has it been a challenge sometimes trying to explain to your kids how famous you are? How their life is not like other kids' life? How there are certain things that they just can't do?

My eldest now is at the age where he wants to do things and he wants to go places and you have to hold him back, or we have to hold him back. You have to explain it to him that there are certain things that he can't do. But to be honest, with our children, we let them do 99% of the things they want to do because we want them to lead a normal life.

What about your future with England, could you ever see yourself putting on an England shirt again? I know how passionate you are about it.

One of the reasons why I've never retired from the England team is because if there's ever an opportunity to play for them again, then I'm available. If there is any chance of me ever playing for my country again, I would never turn that down. Like I said, I'm almost 38 years old so the chances are very slight, but you never know. (smiles).


Image: David Beckham with his family
Photographs: Stuart Wilson/Getty Images
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'I like snails funnily enough'

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You've lived in a lot of different places, seen a lot of different cultures, tasted a lot of different foods, what's your favourite type of cuisine?

Favourite type of cuisine, oh my goodness, I love French food I must admit. Obviously living here at the moment, I've always loved French Cuisine.

Any dish in particular?

I like snails actually. I like snails funnily enough.

(Interrupts) Escargot.


Image: David Beckham
Photographs: Chris Jackson/Getty Images
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London is Beckham's favourite city

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I'm from Portugal, we eat that a lot too. Favourite city?

London

Favourite stadium to play in?

Wembley


Image: David Beckham
Photographs: Mark Thompson/Getty Images
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'It was great at the time'

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The haircut you most regret?

None.

The Mohawk, you really don't regret that?

It was great at the time. You obviously didn't like it.


Image: David Beckham
Photographs: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
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Beckham doesn't regret his tattoos

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I could never pull it off. How many tattoos do you have?

32

Favourite one?

My children's names.

Any tattoo you regret?

None. They all have a meaning. I think that's what's important about tattoos, if they all have a meaning you'll never regret them.


Image: David Beckham
Photographs: Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
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'Everyone loves Tom, he's an amazing person'

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What's the most impressive mobile number you have on your phone? Someone you could just dial up. Obama?

That would be telling, that would be telling.

I'm not asking for the number. But you know a lot of big celebrities, what's one of them?

I'm sure you could work it out.

Well I'm going to take a stab in the dark and say that you've got Tom Cruise's number. Who is more famous, he or you?

(Interrupts) Yes.

Him, without a doubt.

In Asia even?

Of course. Everyone loves Tom, he's an amazing person.

Who's better looking?

Him, without a doubt. He is. Have you seen him in person?

(Interrupts) Oh c'mon. No I haven't actually.

Wait until you see him.


Image: David Beckham (right) with US President Barack Obama
Photographs: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
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'I wouldn't mind, he used to steal them all'

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I spoke to Roberto Carlos when he moved out to Russia and we were talking about different guys in the dressing room. I asked who's the vainest player you've ever shared your dressing room with, and he said you.

(Interrupts) Is that what he said? My goodness I can't believe

That's what he said. I do have the tape to prove it. Just the creams. Look, I wear facial cream.

I wouldn't mind, he used to steal them all.

I'll get that back to him. Who's the vainest player you've ever shared the dressing room with?

Roberto Carlos.

Because he used your creams?

Yeah.


Image: David Beckham with Roberto Carlos
Photographs: Denis Doyle/Getty Images
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