David Beckham reveals Lionel Messi embarrassed him into retirement during PSG clash vs Barcelona – The SunDecember 5, 2020
DAVID BECKHAM has revealed he was embarrassed into retiring by Lionel Messi.
The Manchester United and England legend, now 44, brought down the curtain to his illustrious career with a stint at Paris Saint-Germain in 2013.
And it was over two legs against Barcelona in the 2012-13 Champions League that Beckham realised it was time to hang up the boots, thanks to a certain Mr Messi.
Beckham once revealed: "I probably decided to retire when Messi was running past me."
But he's now taken it a step further by telling Argentine reporters he enjoyed those games – despite being run ragged and PSG being knocked out on away goals after a 3-3 stalemate.
Beckham claimed: "We were ahead. [Messi] came on and Barcelona scored.
"Despite my age, I enjoyed playing and the team was good in both games. We did things to be proud of. We didn't lose to them."
Beckham enjoyed a trophy laden 15 years during stints at Man Utd and Real Madrid – tasked with taking on a young Messi a numbers of times during his spell at the Bernabeu.
But "Golden Balls" opted to quit the club in 2007 and blaze a trail by joining MLS side LA Galaxy.
BECK AND CALL
Becks spent five seasons in Los Angeles, with two spells on loan at AC Milan during the American off-season.
After quitting LA Galaxy, Beckham enjoyed one last hurrah at PSG – where he played 12 times in the second-half of the season.
More-recently, Beckham has launched his very own MLS franchise, Inter Miami – and even has aspirations of signing Messi one day.
The Argentine superstar, 32, is able to leave on a free at the end of the current season and Becks is keen to land him.
Becks teased: "Well you know what, we've got great opportunities down in Miami.
"We've been contacted by a lot of different players over possibly coming to join the team.
"As with any owner, you really want the best players and if we have the opportunity to bring in players like Cristiano or Leo…
"I have such admiration for them as athletes, if we could bring those players in then great."
And Beckham even weighed-in on the age-old Messi vs Cristiano Ronaldo debate – saying the Portuguese star is nowhere near the Barcelona forward's level.
He said: [Messi] is alone in his class as a player, it is impossible that there is another like him.
"He, like Cristiano Ronaldo, who is not at his level, are both above the rest."
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