Beckham set to play against Manchester United

February 14, 2007

MANCHESTER, England -- David Beckham will play against his former club Manchester United at Old Trafford for the first time since he left them in 2003 in a gala European match next month.

Beckham, who scored on his unexpected comeback for Real Madrid last Saturday, has been confirmed as a member of a European All-Star XI which will play United in a jubilee match being staged to mark the 50th anniversary of the founding of the European Common Market, the forerunner of the European Union, and United's 50 years of European competition.

Beckham said: "I'm happy to know I'm going to play on March 13th. It will be something special to go back to Old Trafford and I'm really looking forward to it."

The former England captain, 31, played almost 400 games for United before leaving to join Madrid nearly four years ago. Since leaving Manchester United, he has played at Old Trafford for England, but never against United.

Beckham, whose stay at the Bernabeu Stadium will end in the summer when he moves to Major Soccer League club LA Galaxy in America, will be a huge draw for the game.

The European side will be managed by Italian World Cup winning manager Marcello Lippi, who is expected to include several members of his squad which lifted the trophy in Germany last summer.

Beckham is also guaranteed to have at least two former England teammates alongside him with the Liverpool pair of Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher confirmed in the European lineup.

United manager Alex Ferguson has promised to play a full-strength side in the match.