MLS soccer star David Beckham was in excited mood Monday as he headed back to Manchester for an emotional return appearance at Old Trafford.
Eight years after he left for Real Madrid, Beckham was set to pull on a United shirt once again Tuesday night in the testimonial game for his former teammate and best man at his wedding, Gary Neville.
"Putting a United shirt on again never gets old," Beckham said. "I get goose bumps every time I think about stepping out at Old Trafford again. To be able to do that for Gary and his family means it is going to be an emotional night."
Beckham and Neville’s partnership on the right wing was a fixture for United and England for more than a decade. The LA Galaxy midfielder said he was looking forward to reuniting with the defender, who retired from playing in February after 20 seasons at United.
"I played with him for so many years," Beckham said. "We were roommates, he was best man at my wedding and he is one of my best friends. I am looking forward to seeing him play. After a few months of not playing and training, that will be interesting."
Current United squad members Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes were also set to take the field Tuesday night, only four days before the UEFA Champions League final against Barcelona.
Gary’s brother, the Everton captain Phil Neville, and retired midfielder Nicky Butt were also set to return as the ‘Class of 1992’ youth team is reunited.
The game against Italian giant Juventus was set to replay the 1999 Champions League semi-final, which United won on its way to the famous last-gasp final victory against Bayern Munich.