David Beckham reflects on the ‘rebellious’ moment he shaved THOSE blond curtains after a row with Sir Alex Ferguson: ‘I never wanted to create attention’
- READ MORE: Emotional David Beckham speaks for the first time about his mental health battles in new docu-series
David Beckham has insisted he ‘never wanted to create attention’ when he shaved his signature blond curtains.
The football legend, 48, has offered insight into his turbulent life and career in a four-part Netflix series, including his relationship with Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
In the third episode of the series, David admitted he shaved off his famous blond look to ‘rebel’ from his manager, after the pair had a tense row during training.
He said: ‘I had a hairdresser at the time called Tyler, I said to him ‘I’m gonna cut my hair,’ and he said ”are you sure? You really want to do that?”
Ole Gunnar Solskjær then recalled David returning to training with his shaved head under a hat, and when Sir Alex asked him to remove it, he refused.
Legendary: David Beckham has insisted he ‘never wanted to create attention’ when he shaved his signature blond curtains (left) into a skinhead (right) following a row with Sir Alex Ferguson
Looking back: Speaking in the third episode of his Netflix documentary, the sportsman revealed he decided shave off his famous blond look after a row with Sir Alex Ferguson
Speaking in the documentary, Alex said: ‘Stubbornness! But oh well.’
Gary Neville added: ‘Come on, you’;re asking for a b********g, you’re asking for trouble, he knew that it would p**s sir Alex off, so why do it?’
‘That was his personality, never bothered you? Never bothered me in the last, I used to think ”you better back it up at the weekend!” Roy Keane added.
David’s new look became a nationwide obsessed, with schools forced to ban children from shaving their heads to emulate their idol.
Explaining the decision to change his famous look, David added: ‘I never did it to create attention, I’m not that person.’
His wife Victoria added: ‘David starts going from a boy to a man, and it’s only natural you’re going to start flexing your muscles right? And don’t all kids rebel against their parents?’
Relations between David and Sir Alex continued to deteriorate in the later years, culminating in the moment that he had to be held back during their infamous row in 2003 after the legendary Scot kicked a boot at the ex-England captain.
Beckham remembered seeing his ‘fuming’ boss and revealed he had swore at him to further enrage him on top of the result after his manager criticised him for failing to follow his runner in the build up to a goal.
Naughty: Sir Alex branded David ‘stubborn’ when he refused to remove his cap in training after shaving his head, amid growing tensions between the pair
Shocking: Relations between David and Sir Alex continued to deteriorate, culminating in the moment that he had to be held back after the legendary Scot kicked a boot at him
Ferguson then launched a boot at Beckham, with the midfielder later seen sporting an eye injury in training.
‘We walked in the changing room and the boss is fuming. I can see it by his face,’ he said.
‘And when you see the boss’s face like this, you don’t want to be anywhere near him. It is a face that no one can do, trust me.’
After it was claimed the coach was ‘effing and blinding’, he added: ‘I went back at the boss and said “no” and then I swore. I said the f- word. And then I saw him change, and I was like, “s***, I really shouldn’t have said that”. I think I said the f-word too many times.’
He then revealed his furious reaction to the boot being launched at him, adding: ‘I went at him – someone had to hold me back.’
Former United striker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had also revealed that it was his boot that was launched at Beckham before revealing more details about Ferguson taking issue with Beckham’s performance.
‘When you lose you take your boots off and wait for the gaffer to talk and he starts effing and blinding at David. Look at the video, David says. [Sir Alex says] I don’t need a f***ing video, I’ve got my eyes. I could then just see my boot flying.’
Beckham later spoke of his heartache at having to leave United for Real Madrid the following season – saying he pleaded to stay at Old Trafford.
He said he asked ‘Can I speak to the boss?’ before being told, ‘No, he doesn’t want to talk to you.’
Beckham added: ‘And I said, “I need to speak to the boss, I need to know this is really what he wants” and I pleaded to not go. I couldn’t get in contact with the boss. Did I ever want to leave Man United? No, never.
‘It was my home. My relationship with the boss was always special. We had our moments, but I still loved him.’
Ferguson said their relationship ‘was at a stalemate’.
‘There was not going to be any point in me saying to David, “I’m selling you”,’ he added. The decision was made, it was better he went. He didn’t need to go. He could have stayed if he wanted. I think he knew it was the right time.’
In the same documentary, it was also revealed that Beckham’s relationship with then-Spice Girls singer Victoria Beckham added tension to his relationship with Ferguson.
Former team-mate Paul Scholes said: ‘His relationship with Victoria was p***ing the manager off. He thought it was affecting his football.’
The four-part documentary saw the Beckhams speak emotionally about David’s life, spanning his life from his childhood through to his latest role as co-owner of US side Inter Miami.
In the final episode of the series, Victoria broke a 20-year silence to detail the pain she suffered in the aftermath of the claims about her husband David’s alleged affair with Rebecca Loos.
Challenges: The four-part series has seen the Beckhams speak emotionally about David’s life, spanning his life from his childhood through to his latest role as co-owner of Inter Miami
The designer revealed that the months afterwards were the ‘hardest’ of her life and that she no longer felt like the couple ‘had each other’.
Meanwhile, Beckham admitted he still doesn’t know how they got through the 2003 crisis but he and his former Spice Girl wife knew they had to ‘fight for their family’, and said they felt like they were ‘drowning’ when their high-profile marriage was in the headlines for months.
The former England captain also told how he ‘felt physically sick every day’ as he and Mrs Beckham faced a battle to save their marriage.
In a searingly honest interview in the fourth and final episode, Victoria, 49, appeared to fight back tears as she was asked if it was the hardest time in their marriage. ‘100 per cent,’ she confessed. ‘It was the hardest period for us. Because it felt like the world was against us.
‘Here’s the thing, we were against each other, if I’m being completely honest. Up until Madrid sometimes it felt like us against everybody else but we were together, we were connected, we had each other.
‘But when we were in Spain, it didn’t really feel like we had each other either. And that’s sad. I can’t even begin to tell you how hard it was. And how it affected me.’
Beckham stunned the world when his alleged relationship with Ms Loos were revealed in the now defunct News Of The World newspaper.
At the time Victoria had decided to remain in the UK so that her young sons Brooklyn and Romeo could stay in their schools. The decision left Beckham lonely, and he admits that he struggled.
He said: ‘When I first moved to Spain it was difficult because I had been part of a club and a family for my whole career, from the age of 15 to when I was 27. I get sold overnight, the next minute I’m in a city, I don’t speak the language. More importantly, I didn’t have my family.
‘Every time that we woke up we felt there was something else … we both felt at the time that we were not losing each other but drowning.’
Tough: The final episode also saw Victoria break a 20-year silence to detail the pain she suffered in the aftermath of claims about her husband David’s alleged affair with Rebecca Loos
Asked how their marriage survived, Beckham told how he feared playing football while his wife struggled to find a way through their crisis.
Shaking his head, he said: ‘I don’t know how we got through it, in all honestly. Victoria is everything to me, to see her hurt was incredibly difficult, but we’re fighters and at that time we needed to fight for each other, we needed to fight for our family.
‘And what we had was worth fighting for. There were some days that I would wake up and think, ‘How am I going to go to work? How am I going to walk on to that training pitch? How am I going to look as if nothing’s wrong?’ I felt physically sick every day when I opened my eyes, ‘How am I going to do this?’
The crisis prompted Victoria to relocate to Madrid, where they bought a £3million home which she says she decorated herself.
She later went on to have the couple’s third son, Cruz, now 18, in the Spanish capital.
Despite creating a base for her family in Madrid, she admits she was not happy with leaving the UK. She said: ‘As soon as I could get the kids in school, we then move full-time. Did I resent David? If I am being totally honest, yes I did. It was probably, if I’m being honest, the most unhappy I have ever been in my life.
‘It wasn’t that I felt unheard because I chose to internalise a lot of it because I was always mindful of a focus that he needed.’
Victoria described their time in Madrid as a ‘nightmare’ and ‘an absolute circus’, while Beckham said the school run was ‘live on Spanish TV’.
In the series, David also reflected on his turbulent sporting career, which hit a dramatic low in 1998 when he was blamed for England’s World Cup exit after lashing out at Diego Simeone, sparking a lengthy campaign of hate and abuse from fans.
Reflecting on the period, which David faced at the age of just 23, the athlete confessed he was a ‘mess’ and left unable to eat or sleep, with his wife Victoria, 49, revealing he suffered from clinical depression and the experience ‘broke’ him.
David recalled feeling ‘very vulnerable and alone’ as he landed back in the UK to hordes of jeering spectators and negative press, with his father Ted admitting David was ‘distraught’ when he met him, saying the young sports star ‘fell into my arms and said, ‘I’ve left everybody down.”
The night before the World Cup game, David had learnt that Victoria was pregnant with their first child and after touching down in England to see his parents he wasted no time jetting off to New York to spend time with his expectant fiancée – who was touring the States with The Spice Girls.
Victoria confessed: ‘I remember not really understanding how serious it was because you know I’ve never really been into football.
‘When he came to me in America he felt he let himself down, he let his teammates down, he let his country down, he let the fans down, me – he felt he let everybody down.
‘But when he was with us Spice Girls there was protection, people couldn’t get to us, we could put a cotton wool around us.
‘I don’t think either of us really realised what was going on in the UK. He went from having that protection into absolute carnage.’
Hard: David (pictured with Victoria at his documentary’s premiere) admitted he still doesn’t know how they got through the 2003 crisis
Difficult: In the series, David also reflected on his turbulent sporting career, which hit a dramatic low in 1998 when he was blamed for England’s World Cup exit
Growing emotional as he reflected on the backlash he received, David confessed: ‘I don’t think I’ve ever talked about it because I can’t.
‘I find it hard to talk about what I went through because it was so extreme. The whole country hated me.’
Detailing the horrific abuse – which became so bad that he was unable to visit the toilet unattended for fear of being attacked on the way – David continued: ‘Wherever I went, I got abused every day.
‘To walk down the street and see people look at you a certain way, spit at you, abuse you, come up to your face and say some of the things that they said, that’s difficult.
‘I wasn’t eating, I wasn’t sleeping, I was a mess.’
David, who received death threats and had effigies made in his likeness, went on to detail the impact it had on his parents, Ted and Sandra, noting: ‘It brought a lot of attention that I would never wish on anyone, let alone my parents and I can’t forgive myself for that.
‘That’s the tough part that happened then. I’m 47 years old now and I beat myself up about it still. Inside it killed me.’
As David’s teammate Phil Neville spoke out about the ‘inhumane’ way David was treated by the nation, Victoria remarked: ‘He was really depressed, clinically depressed.
‘It pained me so much. I still want to kill these people [for how they treated him].’
Thankfully, David was able to redeem himself when he took on Diego once again at the Manchester United vs Inter Milan Champions League quarter final in 1999.
The couple welcomed son Brooklyn on March 4, 1999 at Portland Hospital in London, with David calling fatherhood ‘the most amazing thing’.
Yet even the prospect of welcoming his first child wasn’t enough to stop him from thinking about his image, with Victoria recalling that when she was in labour and lying in bed numb from the waist down due to an epidural, the footballer had cheekily asked if she could style his hair.
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