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LOS ANGELES - David Beckham received a rocky reception from disgruntled Galaxy fans in his return to Los Angeles on Sunday as his Major League Soccer (MLS) club played to a 2-2 draw with his recent Italian club, AC Milan.
The English star, who missed the first half of the MLS season while on loan to AC Milan, was booed during introductions and again on his first touches of the ball.
At half time he approached a section of stands where anti-Beckham banners were displayed and appeared to shout something. A fan jumped down and was restrained by security personnel and escorted off the pitch.
"One of the guys was saying things that wasn't very nice. It was stepping over the line," Beckham said. "I said, 'you need to calm down and come shake my hand', and he jumped over."
Beckham insisted the fan reaction didn't bother him.
"You can't be liked by everyone," he said.
AC Milan manager Leonardo thought the fans were unfair, and if some Galaxy supporters don't want Beckham, he said he'd be glad to have him back at AC Milan.
"Sometimes the supporters don't understand the situation," Leonardo said. "We would be happy if he came back because he did really well. He's incredible.
"The precision he has is something very, very special. He never missed the ball. He controlled the ball. The way the Galaxy plays, (he) is very, very important. They see that every ball begins with him."
Indeed, amid the jeers, Beckham played a role in both Galaxy goals. After Thiago Silva gave Milan a 1-0 lead in the 16th minute, the Galaxy equalised in the 30th through Alan Gordon, set up by Landon Donovan after a cross from Beckham.
Milan went ahead again in the 61st when Filippo Inzaghi timed a run perfectly into the area to score. The Galaxy responded again, earning a corner kick in the 65th minute. Beckham walked deliberately over to take the corner kick, near the fan section that had given him the most grief.
He sent a precise kick into the area and Bryan Jordan headed it in to level the score at 2-2, after which Beckham turned and faced his critics.
Beckham left the game in the 75th minute, waving to a group of supportive fans.
"The cheers in the end drowned out the boos, which was nice," Beckham said. - Sapa-AFP