By Chris Harris

Arsène Wenger is "not surprised" that David Beckham is back in the big time at AC Milan.

The former England captain's career appeared to be drifting towards its conclusion when he left Real Madrid in the summer of 2007 and joined MLS club LA Galaxy. However, the 33-year-old has impressed since joining Milan on loan last month and he is expected to complete a permanent move to the San Siro in March.

Wenger is a long-time admirer of Beckham and in the past has allowed the former Manchester United star to maintain his fitness by training at London Colney. The Frenchman has seen Beckham's work ethic at close quarters and understands why he wants to continue his career in Serie A.

"I’m not surprised," said Wenger. "Any person in life wants to play at the best level and going to the States is going down. You never do that without feeling not right somewhere.

"He was lucky because he’s David Beckham so he could rectify that and come back to the top level.

"I personally encourage my players to play as high as they can because that’s where you want to be, so I am not surprised he [Beckham] made that decision."

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6 Feb 2009