David Beckham Profile

David Beckham

Da­vid Ro­bert Joseph Beck­ham, born Lon­don, Eng­land, May 2, 1975. Da­vid Beck­ham en­joyed an ex­tremely suc­cess­ful ca­reer as a mid­fielder for Man­chester Uni­ted, Pre­ston North End, Re­al Mad­rid, LA Galaxy, AC Mil­an, and Par­is Saint-Ger­main. An Eng­land play­er, Beck­ham notched up an as­ton­ish­ing 115 seni­or ap­pear­ances un­der man­agers Glenn Hoddle, Kev­in Kee­gan, Sven Gor­an Eriks­son, Ste­ve Mc­Clar­en, and Fa­bio Capello be­tween 1996 and 2009. 

Lon­don­er Da­vid Beck­ham joi­ned Man­chester Uni­ted as a train­ee in the sum­mer of 1991 at the age of 16. Come the 1992-93 sea­son and he made his de­but in a 1-1 draw wi­th Lea­gue Di­vi­sion Two si­de Brighton and Hove Al­bion at Gold­stone Gro­und in the Lea­gue Cup Sec­ond Ro­und on the 23rd of Septem­ber 1992. Fol­low­ing a loan spell wi­th Lea­gue Di­vi­sion Three te­am Pre­ston North End dur­ing the 1994–95 sea­son, he made his Pre­mier Lea­gue de­but for Man­chester Uni­ted in a 0-0 draw to bit­ter en­emies Leeds Uni­ted at Old Traf­ford on the 2nd of April 1995, and help­ed The Reds to Pre­miership as well as FA Cup tri­umphs the fol­low­ing sea­son. At the start of the 1996–97 cam­paign, he was han­ded the sought af­ter num­ber ten jer­sey by man­ager Al­ex Fer­guson, and the mid­field star­let re­paid the ges­ture by scor­ing a spec­tac­u­lar goal from the halfway line in the 3-0 win ag­ainst Wim­bledon at Sel­hurst Park on the open­ing day of the sea­son. De­fend­ing FA Carling Pre­miership Cham­pi­ons and FA Cup Win­ners Man­chester Uni­ted went in­to a well de­served 1-0 lead thanks to a goal from ever dan­ger­ous fron­trun­ner Eric Can­tona in the 25th min­ute, and the vis­it­ors were nev­er really threathened from that point on­wards. The Crazy Gang were un­able to de­vel­op any flu­ency to their play and Vinny Jones and his com­pany of merry men went fur­ther be­hind dur­ing the fir­st pe­riod of the tie when De­nis Ir­win ma­naged to find the net to make it 2-0 to the vis­it­ing si­de sev­en min­utes be­fore the sound of the ha­lf time sig­nal. Then in the very last min­ute of nor­mal play­ing time, Beck­ham power­ed a mag­ni­fi­cent long dis­tance shot from his own ha­lf over hap­less net­mind­er Neil Sul­li­van and in­to the back of the goal to make the res­ult 3-0 to Uni­ted, and a few weeks la­ter he was voted Pre­mier Lea­gue Play­er of the Month for Au­gust. An ex­cel­lent cross­er and pass­er, he was cap­able of put­ting the ball ex­actly where he wanted it and he ex­ecuted one of the hard­est free kicks ever in the long and proud his­tory of Man­chester Uni­ted. And al­though there were mo­ments that verged on the mor­on­ic, his pro­fes­sion­al soc­cer ca­reer was most con­sist­ent and highly successful.

On the 29th of Septem­ber 2001, Da­vid Beck­ham in­spired his Man­chester Uni­ted te­am to a sen­sa­tion­al Pre­mier Lea­gue win over Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur at White Hart Lane as they ma­naged to pro­duce an as­ton­ish­ing and un­ex­pec­ted come­back ag­ainst Spurs. Af­ter be­ing three goals down, the gu­ests turned the tussle ar­ound to thump The Li­ly­whites 5-3 thanks to goals from An­drew Cole, Lau­rent Blanc, Ruud Van Nistel­rooy, Ju­an Se­basti­an Ver­on, and Beck­ham him­self. The Man­chester Uni­ted te­am on that day con­tained Fa­bi­en Bar­thez, Ga­ry Ne­ville, De­nis Ir­win, Nicky Butt, Paul Scho­les, Ju­an Ver­on, Andy Cole, Lau­rent Blanc, Ronny John­sen, Da­vid Beck­ham, and Ruud van Nistel­rooy, whi­le Tot­ten­ham fielded a si­de con­tain­ing Neil Sul­li­van, Dean Richards, Chris Perry, Led­ley King, Maur­i­cio Tar­icco, Dar­ren An­der­ton, Chris­ti­an Ziege, Stef­fen Fre­und, Gus Poyet, Les Fer­dinand, and Teddy Sher­ing­ham. The de­fend­ing Pre­mier Lea­gue Cham­pi­ons fou­nd them­selves as much as three goals down at the ha­lf time break af­ter Richards, Fer­dinand, and Ziege had re­cor­ded one goal apiece for Tot­ten­ham. But the sec­ond frame of the ga­me turned out to be quite an­oth­er story as the vis­it­ors hit back to claim a fully de­served 5-3 suc­cess ag­ainst Glenn Hoddle´s si­de. The North Lon­doners went in­to an early fir­st ha­lf lead when Dean Richards con­ver­ted an ex­cel­lently ex­ecuted flag kick from Chris­ti­an Ziege in the 15th min­ute of the ga­me. A mere ten min­utes la­ter in the top flight con­test, Gus Poyet el­eg­antly chipped the ball over the opposition´s de­fence for Les Fer­dinand who fou­nd the back of the goal wi­th a low shot pa­st away cus­todi­an Fa­bi­en Bar­thez. The So­uth Amer­ic­an play­maker pro­vided an­oth­er as­sist as he cros­sed for the com­pletely un­marked Ziege who nod­ded the ball ho­me from a few yards out to make the score­board at White Hart Lane re­flect a seem­ingly sol­id 3-0 ad­vant­age to Tot­ten­ham af­ter 45 min­utes. Whatever Man­chester Uni­ted boss Sir Al­ex Fer­guson told his men dur­ing the ha­lf time break, it most def­in­itely did the trick. With­in the very fir­st min­ute of the sec­ond ha­lf, Beck­ham passed the ball to over­lap­ping Ne­ville who de­livered an ex­quis­ite cross that was head­ed in­to the back of the net by Cole. The Man­cuni­ans con­tin­ued to press high and they were re­war­ded when they won a cor­ner kick from which Blanc rose more or less un­chal­lenged to head in­to the Spurs net af­ter 58 min­utes of ac­tion. And four­teen min­utes la­ter, Man­chester Uni­ted had their hard earned equal­ising goal when De­nis Ir­win re­place­ment Mi­kael Sil­vestre ac­cur­ately cros­sed for Van Nistel­rooy who had no prob­lems what­soever in head­ing the ball in­to the net from clo­se ran­ge. Then in 76th min­ute of the Pre­miership fix­ture, Scho­les and su­per sub­sti­tute Ole Gun­nar Sol­skjaer bril­liantly com­bined to set free Ver­on who­se well pla­ced shot went in­side the far post. Then, wi­th just three min­utes re­maining on ref­er­ee Jeff Winter´s wa­ter­proof watch, Sol­skjaer fou­nd Beck­ham at the edge of the eight­een-yard area, and the mid­fielder made no mis­take as he rifled the ball pa­st ho­me goal­keeper Neil Sul­li­van to make it 5-3 to United.

Da­vid Beck­ham pro­ceeded to play 394 fir­st te­am mat­ches wear­ing the le­gendary red shirt be­fore the free run­ning mid­fielder joi­ned for­ces wi­th Re­al Mad­rid for an es­tim­ated trans­fer fee of £25 mil­lion at the end of the 2002-03 sea­son af­ter he had fallen out wi­th firebrand head coach Sir Al­ex Fer­guson. Beck­ham, who won six Pre­mier Lea­gue titles, two FA Cups, two FA Com­munity Shields, one UEFA Cham­pi­ons Lea­gue, and one In­ter­con­tin­ent­al Cup dur­ing his years in Man­chester, la­ter openly told the press that he very much re­gret­ted leav­ing the club, how­ever, and that he nev­er should have gone any­where else. Af­ter set­tling down at the San­ti­ago Bern­abeu Sta­dium, he was han­ded his Re­al Mad­rid de­but by for­mer Man­chester Uni­ted as­sist­ent man­ager Car­los Queir­oz in a 4-0 friendly fix­ture tri­umph ag­ainst China Dragons in front of a 50,000 audi­ence at the Work­ers Sta­dium in Beijing on the 2nd of of Au­gust 2003, and went on to notch up 32 Span­ish Pre­mier Lea­gue out­ings for the white shirts dur­ing his fir­st sea­son at the club. Whi­le in Mad­rid, Beck­ham ma­naged to make 116 La Liga ap­pear­ances for Gen­er­alis­simo Fran­cisco Franco´s old te­am and he won the Span­ish Pre­mier Lea­gue in 2007 and the Span­ish Su­per Cup in 2003 wi­th The Me­ringues be­fore he agreed to put pen to pa­per on a highly luc­rat­ive five-year deal wi­th Ma­jor Soc­cer Lea­gue out­fit Los Angeles Galaxy in the sum­mer of 2007. Fol­low­ing his high pro­file ar­rival in The City of An­gels, the play­er turned pop star de­b­uted for Los Galacti­cos when he took the field as a sec­ond ha­lf sub­sti­tute for for­mer Port­land Tim­bers at­tack­er Alan Gor­don in a 1-0 friendly ga­me de­feat ag­ainst Eng­lish Pre­mier Lea­gue club Chel­sea at the 27,000 ca­pa­city Ho­me De­pot Cen­ter in the Los Angeles sub­urb of Car­son on the 21st of Ju­ly 2007. At the end of the 2007 Ma­jor Soc­cer Lea­gue cam­paign, he spent a three-week train­ing pe­riod wi­th Ar­sene Wenger´s Ar­senal fir­st te­am squad in Jan­uary 2008 un­til he re­turned to Los Angeles Galaxy for the pre-sea­son pre­par­a­tions at the end of the month, and the next year he went out on loan to Itali­an Serie A club Mil­an in or­der to re­tain mat­ch fit­ness ahead of England’s  up­com­ing Wor­ld Cup Qual­i­fi­ers. Beck­ham then went back to Los Angeles Galaxy dur­ing the sum­mer to play the lat­ter ha­lf of the Ma­jor Soc­cer Lea­gue sea­son, but he re­turned to Silvio Berlusconi´s Mil­an for a sec­ond loan pe­riod in Jan­uary 2010. Af­ter ap­pear­ing in well over 100 fir­st te­am mat­ches for Los Angeles Galaxy be­tween 2007 and 2012, he ev­entually agreed to a five-month deal wi­th French Pre­mier Lea­gue club Par­is Saint-Ger­main where he would fin­ish off his pro­fes­sion­al play­ing days at the end of the 2012–13 campaign.

On an in­ter­na­tion­al level, Da­vid Beck­ham won a total of 115 seni­or caps for Eng­land fol­low­ing his full de­but in a 3-0 Wor­ld Cup Quali­fier vic­tory ag­ainst Mol­dova at Sta­di­onul Re­pub­lic­an in Chisinau on the 1st of Septem­ber 1996. Dur­ing the 1998 Fran­ce Wor­ld Cup, he notched up his fir­st goal for his coun­try in the 2-0 tri­umph over Colom­bia at St­ade Bol­laert-Delel­is in Lens on the 26th of June, but he hit an all time ca­reer low in the same tour­na­ment on­ly four days la­ter, when he fou­nd him­self on the re­ceiv­ing end of a straight red card from the ref­er­ee for kick­ing out at as­pir­ing act­or and mid­fielder Diego Simeone of In­ternazionale and Ar­gen­tina in a 2-2 draw ag­ainst The White and Sky Blue at St­ade Geof­froy-Guichard in Saint-Etienne. Al­ways rising to the oc­ca­sion, Beck­ham went on to score one of his most im­port­ant goals for Eng­land when he fou­nd the net wi­th an un­stoppable long dis­tance free kick in a closely con­tested 2-2 Wor­ld Cup Quali­fier draw wi­th Greece at Old Traf­ford on the 6th of Oct­ober 2001. Ar­is at­tack­er An­gelos Char­isteas opened the scor­ing ac­count for The Sky Blue White in the 36th min­ute of the dra­ma at The Theatre of Dreams be­fore Rob­bie Fowl­er re­place­ment Teddy Sher­ing­ham equal­ised for the white shirts wi­th a loop­ing head­ed goal af­ter 68 min­utes of play, on­ly for De­mis Nikolaid­is of AEK Athens to put the ag­gress­ive vis­it­ors back in front a mere min­ute la­ter. Then, in the 93rd min­ute of the tie, the ref­er­ee awar­ded the des­per­ate ho­me si­de a free which was to be taken by no­ne oth­er than Beck­ham. The Lord Byron of in­ter­na­tion­al foot­ball stepped up to take the sub­sequent kick which he blas­ted pa­st Panath­inaikos goal­keeper Ant­onis Niko­pol­idi and in­to the back of the net at the Stret­ford End to avoid some­thing of a Greek tragedy and to send The Three Li­ons to the 2002 Wor­ld Cup in Ja­pan and So­uth Korea. An age de­fy­ing per­former, he served his na­tion­al te­am for over a dec­ade and made his fi­nal in­ter­na­tion­al ap­pear­ance for his na­tion in a 3-0 Wor­ld Cup Quali­fier vic­tory over Be­larus at Wemb­ley on the 14th of Oct­ober 2009. Bey­ond the shad­ow of any doubt, he was destined for big time foot­ball and de­servedly re­ceived an OBE from HM the Queen on the 27th of Nov­ember 2003. A true geni­us on the soc­cer field, Da­vid Beck­ham was also known for bend­ing the ball like Da­vid Beck­ham. An­drew Par­ker: “Des­pite his high pro­file and the ri­dicule he risks, Da­vid Beck­ham stands res­ol­ute: Buck­ing the macho trend, set­ting his own agenda, show­ing sup­port for his wife, and play­ing the per­fect fath­er.” Da­vid Beck­ham Play­ing Ca­reer: Man­chester Uni­ted, Pre­ston North End, Re­al Mad­rid, LA Galaxy, AC Mil­an, Par­is Saint-Ger­main. Man­aging Ca­reer: None.

UNITED FEATURES UNITED REPORTS UNITED REVIEWS UNITED STORIES

Front Page