In a week, Manchester United's tour will wind across America – Boston to Seattle to Chicago – back to New Jersey, where the Red Devils will play the All-Star Game in Red Bull Arena. There, a familiar face will be waiting.
David Beckham will line up for the All-Stars on July 27, ready to face his old team. Nay – still his team, if you go by allegiance and not payroll stubs.
“As a Manchester United fan I’m happy,” the 36-year-old said of Man United's 7-0 thrashing of Seattle Sounders FC. (LA coach Bruce Arena's take was more dry: “Manchester United’s pretty good.”)
The English midfielder left Manchester for Madrid in 2003, where he spent four years playing for Real. The past half decade he has alternated between the LA Galaxy and AC Milan, but with a fully fit MLS season under his belt, Beckham received an All-Star nod.
More than any other year, Beckham has earned the accolade, posting eight assists – one shy of the league lead – and two goals – the most recent straight from a corner – along the way.
He'll savor the experience on Wednesday as much as anyone.
“I’m looking forward to the All-Star Game against Manchester United,” Beckham said, cracking his famous grin. “That’s going to be a great game.”
If any fans needed proof of his sincerity, Beckham then spoke about Manchester City, claiming the rival club will never match United's history.
“They've got strong players, they've got a lot of money behind them, but they're never going to be Manchester United,” Beckham said. “Manchester United's got the history.”
And on Wednesday, part of that history will line up in opposing colors in a celebratory friendly.
Knowles Adkisson contributed additional reporting to this article.
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