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David Beckham Profile
Name: David Robert Joseph Beckham
DOB: May 2, 1975 in Leytonstone, London, England
Profession: Midfielder, Real Madrid & England
Weight: 160 lbs
Wife: Victoria (née Adams), AKA Posh Spice
Children: Brooklyn (b. March 4, 1998), Romeo (b. September 1, 2002), Cruz (b. February 20, 2005)
David Beckham is arguably the most famous athlete in the world. As a midfielder for England and club teams Manchester United and Real Madrid, Beckham has scored goals that defy physics and humiliate goalies. Although his athletic skills put him in an elite class of the world’s best soccer players, it’s his personal life that has sent his celebrity status into the stratosphere. The generous act of saving a Spice Girl from a downward spiral into anonymity through marriage has launched Brand Beckham, an entity over which advertisers and tabloids drool. Check out his career stats here. Want to see him in action? Find out when and where here.
David Beckham Complete Biography
David Beckham signed for Manchester United as a fourteen year-old in 1989. He had to wait four years until he made his professional first team debut for the club in 1992. It took some time for the young midfielder to make an impact, and it wasn’t until 1993 that Becks became a first team regular at Old Trafford having made his debut the year previously as a substitute against Brighton in the League Cup.
A short loan spell followed to nearby neighbours Preston North End, but Becks was soon back and ready for the big time at Old Trafford.
The 1995 season was significant for Manchester United as it was the year that the famous ‘Fergie’s fledglings’ emerged from the 1992 FA Youth Cup winning team. Sir Alex Fergusson turned to the Old Trafford youth team to replace his ageing team, rather than the transfer market. Established United star names such as Paul Ince and Andre Kanchelskis were replaced with the unknown names of Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt, the Neville brothers and David Beckham.
BBC TV football pundit Alan Hansen famously told the nation: ‘You don’t win anything with kids.’ 1996 was a remarkable season for United as Becks helped his team to the double of the Premiership and the FA Cup. The young Beckham took the corner in the Cup Final that led to Eric Cantona scoring a famous winning goal against North West rivals Liverpool.
A spectacular goal from behind the halfway line in a Premiership match against Wimbledon made Beckham a household name. It was a sporting feat that even the great Pele never managed to achieve during his illustrious playing career. The goal became a much played highlight of the season and helped Beckham to be voted as the PFA Young Player of the Year in 1996.
Becks helped United to a back to back Premiership title the following season and was now firmly in the radar of the then England manager Glen Hoddle.
Beckham soon became a regular in the England midfield, making his debut for his country in September 1996 during a World Cup qualifier against Moldova. He was tipped to be a big name in the 1998 World Cup, although at first, manager Glen Hoddle didn’t pick the player in the first two games, stating that ‘his mind wasn’t focussed.’
The tournament turned out to be a disaster for Beckham after he was sent off during a crucial England knock out game against the old enemy of Argentina. Having been fouled himself, Beckham had a moment of petulance as he kicked out from the ground at Argentina’s Diego Simeone and was shown a red card.
Back home and Beckham became a tabloid hate figure. He was ridiculed as the scapegoat for England’s elimination from France ’98 and public opinion became ferocious towards the young star. Effigies of the England midfielder were even burnt outside pubs.
Beckham responded in the perfect manner by having his best domestic season during the ’98 – ’99 season. He played a major role in helping Manchester United win the treble of the Premiership, the FA Cup and the Champions League. This remarkable season led to Beckham becoming the runner up in the European Player of the Year award.
In the summer Beckham took time out to marry his pop star girlfriend, Victoria Adams (AKA Posh Spice.) The event was the showbiz wedding of the year with OK magazine securing the exclusive photographic rights for the wedding.
Beckham became the England captain in 2000 following the resignation of Kevin Keegan as the national team coach. Caretaker manager Peter Taylor promoted Beckham to the role, and the full time replacement Sven Goran-Eriksson kept the midfielder as his leader on the pitch. The move surprised many at the time as Beckham had a reputation for not being a great communicator. He took to the role superbly though and his since been a great ambassador for his country, helping England to qualify for the 2002 World Cup, playing his most influential game in a crucial qualifying match against Greece at Old Trafford.
A metatarsal injury ahead of the 2002 World Cup was an irritant for Beckham, but he bounced back to score the winning penalty against old rivals Argentina in the group stages. But the England captain’s dream of lifting the World Cup was put to an end when England were beaten by Brazil in the quarter-finals.
Back on the domestic front and further Premiership titles followed in 2000 and 2001, but all was not well with Beckham at Old Trafford. His star status, coupled with his celebrity lifestyle with his pop star wife was not well received by Fergusson. ‘No player is bigger than United,’ but Beckham was coming close to eclipsing his team.
The relationship between manager and player reached a dead end in 2003 with the United boss reportedly kicking a football boot in the face of his midfield star. Beckham was not shy in being photographed by the press, documenting the facial injury. It was therefore no surprise that Beckham signed in the summer of 2003 for the Spanish giants Real Madrid. His last act at Old Trafford was to secure another Premiership title at Old Trafford and shortly before his move to Madrid, Beckham was awarded an OBE for his services to football.
With his famous No 7 shirt already taken by Raul Gonzalez at the club, Beckham became the new No 23 in Madrid. This was the number of the NBA star and hero of Beckham, Michael Jordan. The passionate Spanish fans warmed to Beckham straight away and he was given a hero’s welcome upon his arrival in Madrid. Although Beckham has performed solidly in La Liga, his team have failed to regain the momentum on the domestic front from their great rivals Barcelona.
Beckham hit the headlines for a series of domestic problems in 2004 with newspaper reports claiming an extra-marital affair with Rebecca Loos, a former personal assistant. But the Beckham family showed a united front with the three Beckham sons – Brooklyn. Romeo and Cruz – all appearing in public for the first time with their famous parents.
Euro 2004 was a disappointment for the England captain. He had a penalty saved in the 2-1 defeat by France, and missed another spot kick as the tournament hosts Portugal knocked out England during a penalty shoot out.
Further prestigious off the field activities followed in 2005 as Beckham became a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in January, and then was used heavily as one of the key promotional figures in helping London secure the 2012 Olympics.
Beckham started the 2006 World Cup campaign in a disastrous style as he was the first England captain to be sent off for England. His 50th cap as England captain came against Argentina. Despite a few scares, England still topped their qualifying group and Beckham prepared to captain his country possibly for the last time at a major international tournament in Germany 2006....
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, Jun 26 2007, 6:28 AM EDT
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