David Beckham has hinted he may carry on playing for England until the World Cup finals of 2010.
David Beckham has hinted he may carry on playing for England all the way to the World Cup finals in 2010.
England Captain Beckham was back to his best against Wales recently when he played in a new more central role for the Three Lions.
Now he has dismissed suggestions that he is over the hill at the age of 30 – and revealed he has no plans to give up international football for a long, long time.
He said: "Even if I play in another position in the team and it’s not in the centre I would like to think I can carry on for quite a few years to come.
"I would like to be still playing at the age Roy Keane is for Ireland. Roy is a great player, one of the best midfielders in the world and if I can carry on playing like he is then I would be very happy.
"I’ve always said that I would love to play not just in this World Cup but the one in South Africa. But we’ll have to wait and see about that. We’ll have to see how my legs are!"
The task facing Beckham right now, however, is to lead his team to victory in Belfast and make sure England go top of Group 6 with two matches to go.
The England Captain says his current fitness levels are just as good as five years ago and he is totally focused on beating the Irish.
He said: "The most important thing for us is to win the game. We don’t take any team for granted, we’ve not taken the Welsh team for granted, we knew it was going to be a tough game there, and it was.
"There’s obviously a lot of strengths throughout the Northern Ireland team.
David Healy caused us a few problems when we played at Old Trafford and I’m glad he’s fit because I played with him at United and trained with him week in week out. He’s a great guy and a good player.
"Obviously Keith Gillespie too. I spent many many years with Keith, he was next door to me in digs at United when we grew up. He’s a great player and a good talent. It will be a tough game."
If England can win, though, they will be tantalisingly close to the World Cup Finals – with a chance to improve on reaching the quarter-finals of Japan in 2002 and of Euro 2004 in Portugal.
Beckham said: "For me it could be third time, lucky. I would like to think so.
"We have been disappointed in where we’ve come in the last two big competitions but hopefully this will be the one, when we qualify, that we can go further in."