Becks backs Real for Liga crown
David Beckham is backing former club Real Madrid to wrest the Primera Division title off arch rivals Barcelona this season.
Madrid have not won a major trophy since 2008 and in the meantime have seen Barça establish themselves as one of the greatest sides in football history, but with Jose Mourinho now at the helm the capital club are hoping to reclaim top spot in both Spain and Europe.
The nine-time European champions could hardly have had a better start under Mourinho. They are unbeaten after 12 games, winning nine, and are currently at the top of both the Primera Division standings and their Champions League group.
There is still a long way to go, but Beckham believes Madrid can come out on top this season. When asked who he thought out of Barcelona or Madrid would win the title, Beckham told Spanish television channel Antena 3: "As much as I respect Barcelona and think it's a great club, my heart is always with Real Madrid.
"So I believe that this year, with the manager they've got in, with Florentino (Perez, Madrid president) - I love Florentino who is such a great man and makes special things happen at the club - so with him there, with the players they've got at the club, I believe they will be number one this year."
Beckham, 35, spent four years at Madrid and won the Primera Division title in his final season before moving to the Los Angeles Galaxy in 2007.
The former England captain, who was ruled out of this summer's FIFA World Cup™ after suffering an Achilles injury while on loan at AC Milan in March, also spoke of his admiration for Madrid boss Mourinho. The former Manchester United man said of the Portuguese: "I love him as a person, he's an incredible person. He was one of the first people to send me a message after I did my injury."
On who he felt deserved to win this year's prestigious FIFA Ballon d'Or award, Beckham added: "David Villa. I think he had a great World Cup, but I'm gonna give it to Iker (Casillas, Real Madrid goalkeeper) because he's my friend!"