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David Beckham: The Journey to Becoming a Football Star

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David Robert Joseph Beckham, born May 2, 1975, is a former professional football player from England who is now the president and co-owner of Salford City and Inter Miami. For his impeccable skills of crossing ability, passing, and bending free-kicks as a right-side player, Beckham has been praised as one of the best and most known midfielders of his generation, as well as the best backdrop specialists of all time. He is the first English player to win league championships in the US, France, Spain, and England.

Beckham made his first-team debut at the age of 17 for Manchester United in 1992, this made a start for his professional club career. He won the FA Cup twice, the Premier League six times, and the UEFA Champions League in 1999 while playing for United. After that, he spent four seasons as a player for Real Madrid, where he won the La Liga title in his last year there. In July 2007 Beckham accepted a five-year deal with LA Galaxy, a Major League Soccer team. In 2009 and 2010, he had two loan stints in Italy with AC Milan while he was a player for the Galaxy. He became the first footballer from Britain to participate in 100 UEFA Champions League matches. After a 20-year career in which he won 19 major trophies, he retired in May 2013.

On September 1, 1996, at the age of 21, Beckham made his debut for England in international football. During his six years as captain, he received fifty-eight caps. In all, he made 115 appearances throughout his career, participating in two UEFA European Championship tournaments in 2000 and 2004, as well as three FIFA World Cup tournaments in 1998, 2002, and 2006. Up until 2016, he held the record for most England outfield appearances.

Early Life

Beckham was born in Leytonstone, London, England, at Whipps Cross University Hospital. He is the son of kitchen fitter David Edward Alan “Ted” Beckham (born 1948 in Edmonton, London) and hairdresser Sandra Georgina (née West), who were married in 1969 in the London Borough of Hackney. 

In remembrance of Bobby Charlton, his father’s favorite football player, he was given the middle name Robert. Joanne Louise is his younger sister, and Lynne Georgina is his older sister. He went to Nevin Drive, Chingford’s Chingford County High School. According to Beckham, in a 2007 interview, “Whenever the teachers at school asked, ‘What do you want to do when you’re older?’ “I want to become a footballer,” I would say. “No, what do you really want to do, as a job?” they would reply. However, I’ve only ever wanted to do that.” Said Beckham in his several interviews. 

In his autobiography, Beckham stated, “I’ve probably had more contact with Judaism than with any other religion.” His maternal grandfather was Jewish, and he was identified as “half-Jewish.” Throughout his childhood, Beckham wrote in his book Both Feet on the Ground, that he went to church every week with his parents because it was the only way he could play football for their team.

Did you know? David has more than 50 tattoos and most of them are dedicated to his family.

Career Trajectory

Beckham joined a group of young players under Eric Harrison’s coaching that included Ryan Giggs, Gary Neville, Phil Neville, Nicky Butt, and Paul Scholes. They signed with Manchester United as trainees on July 8, 1991, and helped the team win the FA Youth Cup in May 1992. On April 14, 1992, Manchester United defeated Crystal Palace 3-1 in the first leg of the final, with Beckham scoring the team’s second goal in the thirtieth minute. Beckham played the entire ninety minutes of the second leg on May 15th, when Manchester United won 3–2 and 6–3 overall. Beckham’s impact earned him a first-team debut on September 23, 1992, as a replacement for Andrei Kanchelskis in a League Cup match against Brighton & Hove Albion. Beckham then signed as a professional on January 23, 1993.

Fun Fact: David was the first British player to play in 100 UEFA Champions League games.

As the summer 2003 transfer window approached, Manchester United appeared eager to sell Beckham to Barcelona, and the two clubs even announced a deal for Beckham’s transfer, but he instead joined reigning Spanish champions Real Madrid on a four-year contract for €37 million. In the era of global stars brought in by club president Florentino Perez every summer, Beckham was the most recent addition. The news was devastating for newly elected Barcelona president Joan Laporta, who had staked his presidential campaign on signing Beckham.

Beckham’s amazing football skills earned him to play for several teams. He did a lot of in and outs and was loaned to several teams that were keen on picking him as the team player. 

International Career 

On September 1, 1996, Beckham made his debut for England against Moldova in a FIFA World Cup qualifying match. He took part in the Tournoi de France, a friendly international football match played in France in June 1997 as a prelude to the FIFA World Cup 1998. 

Beckham was selected in the 23-man England squad for the finals in France and played in all of England’s FIFA World Cup qualifying matches. However, manager Glenn Hoddle publicly criticized Beckham for not focusing on the tournament, and he did not start either of England’s opening two games. He was selected for the third match against Colombia and scored his first goal for England with a bending 30-yard free kick in a 2-0 victory.

David Beckham Academy 

The David Beckham Academy football school was established by Beckham in 2005 and is located in both London and Los Angeles. Late in 2009, it was declared that both would close. Beckham created a mobile academy that would tour the UK, Europe, and other countries. 

Personal Life

Victoria Adams and Beckham began dating in 1997 after she attended a Manchester United game. His team was also having fantastic success. She was well-known as “Posh Spice” of the pop music group Spice Girls, one of the biggest pop groups in the world during those times. As a result, the media began to notice their relationship right away. The media dubbed the couple “Posh and Becks”. On January 24, 1998, he asked her to marry him at a restaurant in Cheshunt, England. It was fourteen months later when their first child was born. 

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