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FOOTBALL: Becks is the Real deal for Carlos.

BRAZILIAN World Cup winner Roberto Carlos insists David Beckham is not an "advertisement boy" and will prove his class this season at Real Madrid.

Beckham joined Real for pounds 25million last month amid massive media interest, with some critics suggesting the England captain was more use as a marketing tool than a player in a midfield which already boasts Zinedine Zidane and Luis Figo.

But Carlos is a big fan of Beckham and is determined to see Real's latest big- money signing make an immediate impact.

He said: "Now everybody is speaking about how handsome and charming he is but when he starts playing it will be a different matter.

"Real Madrid is not only about pictures for publicity. We are a football team and know what our job is - winning matches and titles. I am certain Beckham will concentrate on the football.

"He is a great footballer and is going to reinforce our team. I hope he makes a great debut so that everybody can see he is an excellent player.

"That would be the ideal way to put an end to all the rumours saying he is only an advertisement boy.

"What matters is football and Real Madrid. Real as a club is more important than Beckham or anyone else.

"David is going to understand that from the start. Madrid has a long history. Over the past few years Figo, Zidane, Ronaldo have joined us and Real just kept on winning."

Carlos expects Beckham to play a more central role, despite making his name on the right wing.

He added: "He is going to play in a different way here - his position will be closer to the centre. But what matters most here is his class and contribution to the team."
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jul 17, 2003
Words:293
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