David Beckham has said he is very honoured to be on the verge of a loan move to AC Milan and is especially excited about playing alongside defender Paolo Maldini.
The Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder will move to the San Siro on a short-term loan deal from January once the details of the deal are agreed.
The 33-year-old former Manchester United and Real Madrid player wants to keep up his fitness during the U.S. close season in order to stay in the reckoning for an England squad place.
"I've been given the chance to join up with Milan for a couple of months and I'm very honoured," he told LA Galaxy's website (http://web.mlsnet.com/t106/) in his first public comment about the proposed move.
"AC Milan is one of the biggest clubs in the world. I've been lucky enough to play with one of the biggest clubs in England, one of the biggest clubs in Spain and now I'm being given the chance to play with one of the biggest clubs in Italy."
Beckham is looking forward to linking up with Milan's array of top-class talent, including 40-year-old captain Maldini.
"I've a great chance to go there, keep fit and play with some of the best players in the world. They've got Kaka, Ronaldinho, (Clarence) Seedorf and also a player with one of the best records in football, in Maldini," he said.
"To be on the pitch, training field and get experience with those players is a big honour for myself."
Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti said earlier on Saturday that he would like to keep Beckham permanently but the player told Galaxy fans they had nothing to worry about.
"Well, one of the reasons I want to train and play in Milan for a few months, is the fact that the MLS season doesn't run as long as the European season and my body is programmed to actually not have that amount of time off," he said.
"It...gives me a chance to keep my fitness up and also carry that on for when I come back to the Galaxy and for the MLS season (in March). It doesn't mean I'm leaving the States. I'm still very committed to being a Galaxy player.
"I came to the Galaxy to win trophies and I want to do that. I'm also very committed to my role as the MLS ambassador and I want to do that.".