He may have not been the fastest on the field.. He may have not had crazy tackling ability. But he was the best of what he could be. David Beckham is a household name today, obviously, as he is the biggest celebrity that the football world has ever seen. But fame and fashion aside, it was the sheer precision of David’s long passes, free kicks and corner kicks that won the hearts of football fans all over the world, including mine.
Starting out as a young lad in the English Premier League, Becks seemed to be the boy to look out for. He had one big dream in his mind, and it came true; playing for Manchester United.Under Sir Alex Ferguson’s able guidance, Beckham blossomed from a young talent to a global superstar, known for his trademark ability to curve the ball so beautifully, creating the popular phrase that was also a movie title: Bend it like Beckham!
After many successful years at Old Trafford, Becks joined the star-studded Real Madrid line-up and didn’t disappoint. Even while playing alongside Zenedine Zidance, Luis Figo, Ronaldo and Roberto Carlos; who were all stars by themselves, Beckham managed to carve a niche for himself when it came to long passes and spot kicks.
As with all celebrities, the media’s portrayal of David Beckham’s personal life and other non-related stuff began to distact people away from his real talent. But Beckham didn’t give in, he took it all on. He endorsed brands, married pop celebrity Posh Spice, became a fashion icon; but he made sure he still delivered his 100% on the field, and that is why he is what he is today.
Beckham didn’t really have a dream start to his international career though. His controversial red card against Argentina at the quarter-finals of World Cup 1998 angered English fans to such an extent, that they blamed him solely for England’s failure to move further in the tournament. Effigies were burnt, and the whole nation hated him. But as a man of great character, Beckham went face to face with this hatred and became England’s captain. He also redeemed himself and won back the love of his countrymen by scoring a crucial, defining last minute wonder free kick goal against Greece at the 2002 World Cup Qualifiers that took England through to the World Cup.
After having conquered the English Premier League and La Liga in Spain, Becks moved to the USA and joined LA Galaxy. Within few months of his inclusion, football, or ‘soccer’, as the Americans call it, became ever so popular. During his time there, Beckham was able to add such a level of class to Major League Soccer, and this seemed to bring about a better standard of soccer in the USA. During this period, Beckham also played for Italian giants, A C Milan, on loan.
Injury did play spoilsport for a few years, depriving Beckham of playing the 2010 World Cup. However, Becks continued to train hard, and focus on his practice and recovery. He took the LA Galaxy to the league leader position, and evidently conquered yet another league.
Post this, Beckham joined the French League with top club, PSG. He signed a very unique contract wherein he stated that all his salary earned here would directly go to a children’s home. With a season at PSG, Becks, although not as quick and firey as he was before, gave his best, and eventually, PSG were champions of the French League 2012-13. This according to Becks, was the perfect finish to an amazing career.
Beckham is not a Messi, or a Ronaldo, but he’s David Beckham; the man who made free kicks beautiful!