Beckham turns away offer from Paris club

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Beckham turns away offer from Paris club

DOHA, Qatar — David Beckham will not join Paris Saint- Germain FC for “family reasons,” the big-spending Qatarbacked French club’s sporting director Leonardo said on Tuesday, amid reports the club will now try to lure either Kaká from Real Madrid or Pato from AC Milan.

“He will not come to PSG,” said the Brazilian, citing “family reasons” for the 36-year-old former England captain’s decision not to relocate from Los Angeles to the French capital.

“It’s over,” Leonardo was later quoted as saying by Lequipe.fr. “It’s a shame. But the well-being of his family in Los Angeles and the desire to not change everything in his life weighed heavily.”

“We are disappointed a little bit, of course, that he is not coming,” Nasser al-Khelaifi, the club’s president, added. “But we are agreed it would be better for everyone if that were so.”

Leonardo’s announcement brings to an end months of speculation linking Beckham, whose contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy finished on Dec. 31, with a transfer to PSG, which on Friday named Italian Carlo Ancelotti its new coach.

“It’s not Carlo Ancelotti’s arrival that changed everything,” Leonardo was quick to stress.

PSG has been trained under the watchful eye of new owner, Qatar’s Crown Prince Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, and club president Khelaifi.

Following the close-season purchase of the club by wealthy investors Qatar Sports Investments, headed by the crown prince, rumors had been rife in the French press that the deal for Beckham was as good as done.

But other sources close to the former Manchester United and Real Madrid star had long kept their distance, saying the player, his wife Victoria and four children were happy and settled in Los Angeles, where he won the MLS Cup title with the Galaxy last season. However, late reports from the Los Angeles Times said it’s still not certain whether Beckham will be back with the Galaxy.

Tim Leiweke, chief executive of Galaxy’s owners AEG, told the newspaper that there was still no deal in place for Beckham to stay with the club, although the Galaxy want to keep him.

“The stories were all over the front page of every newspaper in Europe that he was going to Paris,” Leiweke told the Times. “I told everyone I would not pay a lot of attention to that.”


AFP

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