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Lawyers attempt to prolong Beckham's Italian job

As David Beckham arrived at Glasgow airport yesterday ahead of last night's friendly at Ibrox between Milan and Rangers, his lawyers were involved in talks with his employers, LA Galaxy, about extending his loan period at the San Siro.

Options on the table include Beckham staying in Milan until the end of the season in Europe, and then returning to America, or making a permanent transfer soon, in which case Milan would need to pay Galaxy a transfer fee.

Beckham (33) has a get-out clause in his Galaxy contract but cannot trigger it without financial penalties until October.

The England midfielder's future has been up in the air from the moment he announced he would go on loan to Milan from early January to March -- during Galaxy's off season -- in order to stay fit to increase his chances of prolonging his England career.


Beckham has long made it known privately that his single most important professional objective now is staying in contention for a place in Fabio Capello's England team, and a shot at World Cup glory in South Africa in 2010.

That is why he secured the loan to Milan, in a move which has exceeded all expectations. And that is why his lawyers are now exploring ways to prolong his stay in Italy, where the level of competition is so much higher than in Major League Soccer.

"Beckham's lawyers are talking to the LA Galaxy who are the rightful owners of his registration," confirmed Milan general manager Adriano Galliani.

"If they show themselves to be ready to look at a deal, we would be really happy to do so. At the moment, there's neither optimism nor pessimism. The player belongs to Galaxy. We wish they decide to release him, but if they don't change their minds, the player is theirs.

"We are looking to get him either on loan until the end of the season or on a permanent basis. Otherwise, with the greatest regret from everyone -- starting with me -- Beckham will have to go."

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Beckham has scored two competitive goals for Milan and on Sunday set up two to help his side win 3-0 at Lazio. That result propelled them to second in the Serie A table, six points behind their wobbling city rivals, Jose Mourinho's Internazionale.

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