Build It Like Beckham
David Beckham wears his heart on his sleeves… and his chest, back, neck, legs and hands, among other stretches of skin where the soccer superstar has documented his life’s meaning and milestones.
Among the scores of images tattooed on the model, businessman and revered athlete’s much-coveted flesh, are the names of his four children and remembrances of his athletic career — including ‘99’ commemorating the monumental year Manchester United won the treble, his marriage to wife Victoria and the birth of the couple’s first child.
Family and the love of the sport that he has helped define — and which in turn has defined his life — dominate a body that has made him a superstar both on and off the pitch.
Beckham’s style and sports acumen have brought him fame and accolades that transcend his legendary athletic performances during his 20-year career.
One of the sport’s most celebrated midfielders, Beckham was named by Pelé himself as one of soccer’s top 100 living players, played in three FIFA World Cup tournaments, was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame, and became a pop culture icon, even inspired the award-winning 2002 film, Bend It Like Beckham as well as the 2023 Netflix docuseries, Beckham.
Beckham’s Next Move
At 48, retirement has done nothing to dull his edge. Through determination and hard work, Beckham is building a lasting legacy that may well make more of a mark on the history of soccer than any of his time on the field. He is working toward a goal that would have been unthinkable a decade earlier, making soccer a major sport in the United States.
Beckham has turned his Inter Miami soccer team into the hottest ticket in American sports while pushing to transform the country’s Major League Soccer, or MLS, into an acronym he hopes will be as recognizable in the States as the NFL, NBA or MLB.
The recent signing of legendary Barcelona player Lionel Messi and plans to build a $1 billion stadium in Miami have only added to the fever pitch surrounding Inter Miami.
Fans and A-listers, including Prince Harry, Leonardo DiCaprio, Selena Gomez, Marc Anthony, LeBron James, Owen Wilson, Edward Norton, and Will Ferrell are pouring into the stadiums to catch a glimpse of the soccer superstar and the team’s iconic co-owner who traces his love of the sport back to childhood.
Beckham’s Start On The Pitch
Beckham first drew attention as a spiky-haired 11-year-old, when he won the Bobby Charlton Soccer Schools National Skills competition. This accolade led to a trip to Barcelona where the cheeky young chap caught the eye of a talent scout from Manchester United, his parents’ favorite team.
He signed with the club as a teenager and made his professional debut with Manchester United at the age of 21. Beckham would go on to join the rosters of Real Madrid, LA Galaxy and Paris St. Germain, garnering 19 trophies and scoring 127 goals before his retirement in 2013. He became one of the most recognizable athletes in the world, and not just for his on-pitch achievements.
His endorsements, appearances and provocative photo shoots in partnerships with Adidas, Tudor, Maserati, and countless other luxury brands, have made the six-foot, chiseled and brazenly handsome Londoner a global celebrity, a platform he has used to bring recognition and star power to his new endeavor in bringing soccer across the pond.
By his side for the last 24 years is his wife, fashion designer and former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham. Together this dynamic duo has forged an empire with a strong emphasis on business and philanthropy, contributing millions to well over a dozen charities.
He is a founding member of Malaria No More, and the Victoria and David Beckham Charitable Trust provides wheelchairs and other aid to children in need. His lengthy partnership with UNICEF and the creation of his charitable 7 Fund, helps children in Indonesia, Nepal, Uganda and El Salvador reach their full potential.
Beckham’s Love of Family
But always, Beckham’s family is first and foremost. Their names and images are not just branded on his skin but embedded in his heart.
On social media, where his Instagram alone draws a staggering 83 million followers, his wife and four children, sons model Brooklyn, professional soccer player Romeo and musician Cruz, as well as daughter Harper are omnipresent.
And it’s clear that Harper, 12, has got daddy wrapped around her little finger. He’s got a stick figure she drew at the age of four tattooed on his hand, and images capturing tender daddy-daughter moments abound, to the delight of fans who have no trouble embracing the sexy soccer star’s softer side.
Beckham proudly shares photos of the two playfully posing in clown noses, Harper applying makeup to her famous father, and scrapbooks of photos dedicated to “the most amazing little girl a daddy could wish for” on her birthday.
But perhaps the most telling image splashed across the headlines worldwide is that of a beaming Harper, walking confidently out onto the field at a recent Inter Miami match holding player Lionel Messi’s hand.
The joy captured in young Harper’s eyes embodies Beckham’s devotion to family, sport and his unstoppable drive to build a lasting legacy for generations to come.
By the look of things, David Beckham is well on his way to yet another meaningful goal.