Anson - Beckham still vital in 2018 bid
Published : 16 Mar 2010 19:58:00
David Beckham will be a "major ambassador" for England's 2018 World Cup campaign despite his absence from the tournament this summer, bid chiefs insisted on Tuesday.
The midfielder's ruptured Achilles tendon will keep him out of this summer's World Cup in South Africa, but he is still a key part of plans for England's campaign to host the 2018 tournament.
England 2018 chief executive Andy Anson said: "We have sent David a message wishing him well and hoping he recovers. He's David Beckham - he's going to be a major ambassador for us right through to the end of this."
He added: "We want him to recover to be playing again - that's the only thing we are worried about.
"We have our big moments in the campaign and obviously the final presentation is one thing where we would want our major ambassadors involved. That's a good example of where we would see David's involvement.
"He's just a major, major sporting icon."
Meanwhile Anson hopes that either Gordon Brown or David Cameron - whichever is Prime Minister then - will be involved in the handover of the bid book to FIFA at the end of May.
He added: "They will be involved that week somehow. Whoever is Prime Minister - assuming we have one that week - will be involved in the bid book activity.
"We think it's important that the Government is absolutely committed to this and we demonstrate that at the key moments."