I recently watched the David Beckham documentary on Netflix and loved it. I thought that it was well directed, cut, and that the subject of David Beckham was just so great. I’ve always been a fan of his due to how he conducted his life and consider him to be one of the truly great public figures in the modern world. Even soccer aside, as he was with United a bit before my time where I knew much about his playstyle. When I was a kid I even got some haircuts because he had the same ones. I wore 23 in high school because of him and Michael Jordan. His life really is deserving of the documentary treatment as he has always been amazing at being him, a soccer superstar, model, and a good guy. I also think that his relationship, for the most part with Posh was something refreshing to see, among all the celebrity relationships that exist in our world. Anyways, just let me gush a little.
The fact that he was so young, through his United days and playing for his childhood club made him such a compelling story. And the fact that he stayed so humble through the whole thing and even his teammates look back at him fondly shows the quality of his character. It made sense why he captained so many teams in his time as a professional footballer. It’s obvious that above everything he loved the game more than anything else, as he clearly put in the hours to become who he is. He’s not someone who just got by through nepotism or athletic ability. He’s genuinely amazingly hard working and he paired that with his world class talent. You see a lot of athletes skate by on their athleticism until it’s gone and they realize that they should have spent more time practicing or watching film.
You can tell through the doc, that he is someone who is incredibly accountable as well. Considering how when he became the villain of English football through his offing against Argentina in the world cup, and the hate he received. He never blamed English fans for being vile to his family (which he has every right to do), instead he blamed himself for allowing something to happen. There’s something very commending about that as he’s able to realize that no matter how big he’s gotten and how many yes men there around in his life, he still believes that at the end of the day, he’s the one who is accountable for all his actions.
I especially loved the bit of his commitment to Real Madrid and winning the La Liga title in 2007. He was initially frozen out from the team and had an offer from another team after the season. But after displaying his work ethic, loyalty to his teammates, and the club – he earned his way back into the starting lineup, became a captain, and won the league. I feel like most athletes would mail it in. I’ve had coworkers who’ve mailed it in at the office after giving their 2 weeks. His level of integrity is truly exceptional.
I want to talk about how ahead of his time he is. On the pitch, he played at a level that most people couldn’t play at back then. If everyone was playing in 2D, he was playing in 3D, something that would much suit the modern game. His ability to cross the ball, anticipate space and timing, as well as vision, made him the perfect player to play through. His cardio was insane and he was truly a box to box midfielder. Sir Alex Ferguson utilized him from the right wing to cross the ball into the box, but his real talent was that he could have done it from any position on the field. He was under utilized in his time with United and for most of his career.
His fashion sense, his stance on life, his approach to masculinity, all things that are considered ahead of his time. He had a strong mindset but people were still looking at him like this soft boy because he loved fashion and he married Posh. He wasn’t different because he wanted to be. He was different because that’s just him being true to himself. It’s so clear to me that he was in a different class not just on the pitch but in everyday life.
But lastly, he’s just an absolute dawg. That fire for competition and being the best, built on the foundation of the hard work that was instilled in him by his father and sharpened by Sir Alex was something that really inspired me while watching it. I felt like I wanted to be amazing at my job. It made me miss playing university sports. He’s just so inspiring as a person and I feel like we need more role models like him. Even as he’s retired from playing, you can still see he strives to be his best. Whether it be as a family man or an owner of a professional team. He sees things differently. And we have to tip our cap to Posh as well. She was able to stand by his side the entire time, even through all the madness of moving and the tabloids. She supported him the entire way through and I couldn’t imagine many people being able to support their partner the way she did when they are that ambitious.
If you haven’t given it a watch, I would highly recommend it. I think he and the doc are fantastic and it just made me love the man more. I might name my first born son after him.