Calderon slams Beckham for Real departure

January 15, 2007

MADRID, Jan 15 (Reuters) - Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon has publicly criticised David Beckham, saying he messed the club around over his future.

The former England captain announced last Thursday he would not be extending his contract with Real, but would join Los Angeles Galaxy at the end of the season.

'For months he was messing us around. He never told us he'd bought a house there and I don't think that was right,' Calderon told radio station Onda Madrid on Monday.

'He deserved a better end to his time at Real Madrid.'

Media reports said Victoria Beckham had travelled to the United States and was looking for a house this week.

In another interview with radio station Onda Cero, Calderon said: 'I didn't like the way Beckham conducted himself, announcing publicly that he had another team, doing a video-conference...'

After Beckham made his announcement, club coach Fabio Capello said the midfielder would only train with the side and not play for the rest of the season.

The Italian said this had been a joint decision taken by the club's technical staff, including sporting director Predrag Mijatovic. He said it was not possible to rely on a player who had a contract with another club.

Beckham was left in the stands for Sunday's Primera Liga match at home to Real Zaragoza, which Real won 1-0..

Sources in Major League Soccer have suggested Beckham may now try to bring forward his departure from Real to coincide with the start of the season in the United States in April.

Beckham has signed a five-year deal with the Galaxy which will be worth abount $250 million excluding existing sponsorship deals.

Calderon also confirmed that Brazil striker Ronaldo did not feature in Capello's plans along with Beckham and Italian striker Antonio Cassano.