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Becks in Beijing

David Beckham leaves the family behind for his trip to China Photo: Reuters

To the sounds of screams and sobbing from fans, one of the the world's biggest celebrities arrived in Beijing this morning. Becks in the city is a big event for millions of Chinese followers of the Beckhams.

"He's such a great husband and father" one young woman told me. No mention of football. David Beckham has a clean cut, family man image in China. One fan had made a collage of photos with David Beckham, Victoria and their children.

Fans waiting for David Beckham to arrive in Beijing Credit: ITV News/ Angus Walker

His profile is already high, and about to get even higher. His new role as ambassador for the Chinese Super League will give him his first official position in Chinese football.

It is potentially a dangerous step because Chinese football is not a beautiful game, frequently scarred by bribery and match fixing scandals. Managers, players and even the country's top international referee have been prosecuted and jailed for corruption. Two premiership players; Didier Drogba and Nicolas Anelka recently came to play for a top Chinese team, but they did not last long. Even salaries of around €200,000 a week could not keep them here.

Why is Becks taking the risk? Could it be that he is indeed being a great husband and his football role will support his wife's plans to expand her fashion empire in China.

Victoria Beckham's label enjoys growing popularity with China's wealthy middle classes, one dress I saw on sale in a high end shop today was priced at 13,500 RMB, almost £1,350, around the annual income for a farmer in this country. However, Victoria Beckham and other shrewd international business people can see that with China's middle classes expected to grow from 350 million people to around 600 million by the end of this decade, now is the time to push on into China.

For the Beckhams, that's the goal.