David Beckham has issued a formal apology for hiis admission that he deliberately picked up a yellow card against Wales.

Beckham admitted he got himself booked so he could serve a one-match suspension Azerbaijan – knowing he would miss the game anyway through injury.

Beckham said: “I was asked a question and made a frank and honest admission to counter the negative speculation.

“I now know that was wrong and apologise to the FA, the England coach, my team-mates and all England fans.”

In a statement, Beckham continued: “I have also apologised personally to my manager Sven-Goran Eriksson.

“I know that as captain you are in a privileged position and must always abide by Fifa’s code of fair play, something which I have always done throughout my career.”

Beckham’s admission attracted widespread criticism, with FIFA boss Sepp Blatter saying he was “astonished and disappointed”.

Blatter “I will definitely be interested in how they (The FA) deal with this matter but it is not up to me to say what they should do.”