Footage of David Beckham practicing that free-kick against Greece the day before the match

David Beckham

Happy 45th birthday to one of England’s greatest ever players, David Beckham.

It’s easy to forget just how good a player Beckham really was considering his celebrity lifestyle both during and after his career.

But Beckham enjoyed nine successful seasons at Manchester United, four years at Real Madrid as well as spells at LA Galaxy, AC Milan and Paris Saint Germain before hanging up his iconic Adidas Predators.

Despite achieving so much during his incredible career, Beckham will always be remembered for one moment in particular – especially by England fans.

Of course, we’re talking about THAT free-kick against Greece which sent the Three Lions to the 2002 World Cup.

England were losing 2-1 and only needed a draw to automatically qualify for the summer tournament in Japan & South Korea.

As the clock ticked into the 93rd-minute, England were awarded a free-kick 30 yards out.

Step forward Mr. David Beckham, who curled an incredible free-kick over the ball and into the top corner.

“Give that man a knighthood.”

Beckham is regarded as one of the best free-kick takers in football history but his talent wasn’t natural.

The midfielder spent hours and hours pinging balls into the goal after training as he tried to perfect his set-pieces.

And in the years since, footage has emerged of Beckham practicing his free-kicks the day before that Greece match – in the exact same position in which he scored from. In fact, his final free-kick goes right in the top corner – just like it did 24 hours later.

The footage was posted by Scott Allison, a UEFA A licensed coach and his caption of the video is pretty perfect.

“Many top players post images of cars, fashion etc. Youngsters try to copy. But why not try to copy what got players to the top? #practice,” he wrote.

Happy birthday, Becks.

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