Beckham and Giggs get Olympic call

Stuart Pearce is due to name his provisional 35-man squad for this summer's Olympics, with David Beckham and Ryan Giggs expected to make the grade.

Having been chosen to lead Team GB into London 2012, Pearce has been using the last few months to assemble a squad capable of challenging for the gold medal.

And with just three spaces available to players over the age of 23, there has been much speculation as to who would make the cut.

But, it appears Beckham and Giggs have been chosen ahead of a number of viable alternatives. Both Rio Ferdinand and Frank Lampard have been touted for possible call-ups, while Northern Ireland's Chris Brunt has also been mentioned.

In the last few days however, Craig Bellamy announced he has been selected to represent Great Britain, which would mean the Welsh international fulfils the third and final over-age vacancy.

Speaking to The Sun, Bellamy said: "I am in the Olympic squad - but I was supposed to keep it quiet.

"It's a different challenge. I had a difficult season with Liverpool but the Olympics is a one-off."

For Giggs, the opportunity to represent Team GB at the London Olympics would be the Manchester United stalwarts first major international tournament of his glittering career.

Beckham's inclusion has been something of a foregone conclusion, due to the influential role the former England captain has had in getting the Olympics to London initially.

Despite plying his trade abroad for the past nine years, Beckham's popularity remains as strong as ever, with the 37-year-old receiving a warm welcome from the Wembley crowd on Saturday, as he picked up a special award from UEFA in recognition of reaching 100 caps for his country.

In other Olympic news, Birmingham City goalkeeper Jack Butland is also rumoured to be on the verge of receiving a call-up to Pearce's squad, even though he is involved with England at Euro 2012.

Despite previously stating that players selected for Euro 2012 would not be involved in the Olympics, it is thought that Pearce is willing to make an exception with Butland, as the London games present the perfect opportunity for Butland to gain valuable first-team experience.

The 18-year-old shot-stopper has expressed his willingness to feature for Team GB should he make the grade, although club side Birmingham would ultimately have the final say.