On Wednesday, against AC Milan see’s the return of a Manchester United legend – one of the greats. We all know his name; it is of course one David Beckham.
Unlike Carlos Tevez’s return earlier this season, there is not a single doubt in my mind Beckham will receive a very warm welcome from the Old Trafford faithful, Beckham still holds a place in the hearts and minds of many United fans. The admiration was there for all to hear as United fans sung Beckham’s name as he was being replaced late in the match during the first leg.
For many the first memory of Beckham was the goal he scored against Wimbledon from the half way line, I can still see vividly that moment. I was watching the match in a café/bar in Ibiza, the place was full of fellow United fans. As Beckham first struck the ball there was an initial sigh of disbelief, but as the ball travelled through the air the excitement of those watching steadily increased until the ball hit the back of the net and the room erupted. It was the talk of the town that night.
As you probably all aware Beckham came through the United youth system along with Giggs, Scholes, Butt and the Neville’s – A wonderful crop of youngsters which would dominate English football and eventually win the Champions League in 1999. The team was built on talent and a team spirit developed from the players coming of the United youth system. If I remember correctly Beckham stayed with the Neville family when he first arrived in Manchester due to being a London lad and having no family in Manchester.
I believe Beckham had the best days of his playing career while at United; he was at the peak of his powers and fitness. Everyone knows what Beckham’s best attributes are – his passing and crossing, brilliant at free-kicks and not to be discounted he had a great engine. Beckham didn’t stop running for the full 90 minutes and would give everything for the team. He had a great work ethic.
Regarding Beckham’s departure I feel it was the right time for him to leave United. Looking in from the outside there definitely seemed to be a breakdown in the relationship between Sir Alex Ferguson & Beckham and there is only going to be one winner in that situation. Beckham’s last season at United was a bit of a circus, there wasn’t a day where Beckham wouldn’t be in a Newspaper – be it haircuts, Posh or football boots in the face. I felt at the time a separation would suit both parties.
Even before playing for United, Beckham was a United fan and he still is. Who can forget the moment when Ronaldo scored the breakaway goal against Arsenal in last season’s Champion League Semi-final..? Beckham was seen in the crowd rubbing his hands together with delight and a beaming smile on his face. Beckham still loves United.
David Beckham, I thank you. Thank you for the great memories. 🙂
Beckham made his Manchester United debut in the League Cup during the 1992/93 season. He went on to play a total of 399 games for United scoring 87 goals.
Beckham’s Achievements at United:
- Premier League: 1995–96, 1996–97, 1998–99, 1999–00, 2000–01, 2002–03
- FA Cup: 1996, 1999
- UEFA Champions League: 1998–99
- Intercontinental Cup: 1999
- Community Shield: 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997
- FA Youth Cup: 1992