Belfast Telegraph

Fergie on red alert as Beckham returns to Manchester United

Sir Alex Ferguson last night warned his Manchester United stars over the threat posed by David Beckham on his return to Old Trafford tonight.

Ferguson believes former United folk hero Beckham will start on the bench for AC Milan in tonight’s Champions League last 16 decider.

But Fergie fears he could still have a trademark, scripted role to play with Milan 3-2 down after a Wayne Rooney-inspired United comeback at the San Siro two weeks ago.

The odds are stacked against Milan clawing their way back into the Champions League tie but Ferguson refuses to rule out the Becks factor.

Beckham and his Italian team mates arrived in Manchester yesterday afternoon amid chaotic scenes with fans desparate to catch a glimpse of their idol.

And while Ferguson believes that Beckham may be on the bench for his emotional Old Trafford comeback, he declared himself well aware of the midfielder’s ability to change games, particularly with his crossing ability.

“I am finding it difficult to pick their team, but I don't know whether Beckham will start,” said Ferguson.

“I have not got that down in my conclusions about their team.

“He has not started a game since the first leg, so it is difficult to say what impact he will have on the game.

“But he will be there and the one thing you have to be aware of is his delivery of the ball, which is fantastic.

“That is the threat. There are a lot of threats in their team of course, but we are well aware of David's.”

Beckham scored twice in his last Champions League appearance at Old Trafford, a 4-3 win over Real Madrid in April 2003, but United still bowed out of the competition that night.

“It will be good to see Alex Ferguson again. He is a scary man but in a really good way,” said Beckham.

“He has played such an important role in my life and during my time at Manchester United he was like a father figure to me.”

Milan will need to score at least twice tonight if they are to end United’s hopes of making a third successive final.

Belfast Telegraph

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