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David Beckham makes a token appearance for AC Milan in Germany

February 18, 2009 |  3:00 pm

David Beckham, right, substitutes for AC Milan's Ronaldinho.

David Beckham, slowed by a couple of minor calf and hamstring injuries, came on as an 89th-minute substitute Wednesday as AC Milan earned a 1-1 tie against Werder Bremen in a UEFA Cup game in Germany.

The Italian side was little more than six minutes away from a potentially decisive victory after forward Filippo Inzaghi had scored off the rebound of his own shot in the 36th minute. But Diego tied the match for Bremen at its Weserstadion stadium in the 84th minute.

Beckham, who had not been expected to start, came on in place of Ronaldinho and played the last minute of regulation and the four minutes of extra time.

The away goal could still be decisive for Milan, which will play host to the second leg of the round-of-32 series on Feb. 26 in Italy.

The UEFA Cup, which lags behind the European Champions League but nonetheless has a long and illustrious history, is the only tournament that AC Milan has never won. With the Serie A club trailing Inter Milan by 11 points in league play, it is also the only bit of silverware the Rossoneri still has a chance to win this season.

-- Grahame L. Jones

Photo: David Beckham, right, substitutes for AC Milan's Ronaldinho during a UEFA Cup round-of-32 first-leg soccer match with Werder Bremen on Wednesday. Credit: Joerg Sarbach / Associated Press