Olympic soccer is a bit unusual. It’s not the biggest international tournament in the sport–not by any stretch. The World Cup and the various continental championships (like Euro, which is happening right now) are a much bigger deal. In fact, the Olympic soccer tournament is more of a youth tournament, with each nation only being allowed to include three players older than the age of 23.
Beckham was expected to claim on of the over-age slots on Great Britain’s roster, but coach Stewart Pearce elected to instead go with Ryan Giggs, Craig Bellamy and Micah Richards.
“Naturally, I am very disappointed, but there will be no bigger supporter of the team than me.”
At age 37, Beckham may have always been a bit of a long-shot for the team. Perhaps his immense star power clouded people’s assessment of the actual soccer skill that he could bring to the team. He told reporters last month, “I don’t want to be picked on a shirt sale or a stadium filler. I want to be picked because of what I can bring to the team.”
This is likely the end of Beckham’s international career.