David Beckham knew he was in "bit of trouble" with Sir Alex after Ireland trip

Rising up through the academy ranks of Man Utd before establishing himself as a first team mainstay, David Beckham spent a large portion of his career under the guidance of Sir Alex Ferguson before he eventually swapped Manchester for Madrid in 2003.

Arguably the first footballer of the modern era to embrace celebrity culture, Beckham would go on to spend as much time on the front page of magazines with superstar wife Victoria as he would on the back pages of newspapers, and on one occasion, a trip to Ireland rubbed the iconic manager the wrong way.

Their most infamous run-in came in the changing room at half-time during an FA Cup clash against fierce rivals Arsenal, where Sir Alex kicked a boot that struck the forehead of the midfielder, but Beckham has now discussed a separate incident which sparked an argument between the pair.

Featuring on BBC Radio Four’s Desert Island Discs, Beckham discussed a situation that led to the pair failing to even be on speaking terms after the midfielder made the short trip to Ireland to visit his wife without asking his manager.

"There were certain decisions that I made back then that were wrong decisions and I can see why the manager got so frustrated by certain things," Beckham explained.

"There was one occasion when Victoria was in Ireland, I had a day off so I flew over to Ireland. I didn’t feel I needed to tell the manager what I was doing.

Was it a mistake by Sir Alex Ferguson to let David Beckham leave? Let us know in the comments section.

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"As I was coming back at 6am for training, I was sat in the lounge and the manager walked in. He didn’t talk to me. I knew I was in a little bit of trouble."

The former England skipper went on to concede he understood why Ferguson may have been annoyed over the incident, revealing: "I can understand the manager then thinking, ‘Okay, he’s not looking after his body,’ or ‘he’s not resting as he should do’.

"All the manager ever wanted was the best for the team, the best for the club and the best for the individual."

Ferguson once claimed that Beckham was "the only player I ever coached who was totally unaffected by his mistakes,", whether the former United boss intended that as a compliment remains to be seen.

Manager of United for 26 years, Ferguson he went on to state in his 2013 autobiography how "He [Beckham] could have the worst game possible and still not believe that he had underperformed in any way."

Implying some form of arrogance on Beckham's part, Ferguson went on, offering an insight into the ex-Utd star's post-match thought process.

"He would dismiss you, tell you you were wrong. He was incredibly protective of himself. Whether that was developed by the people around him, I don’t know.

"But he would never concede he’d had a bad game, and never accept he’d made a mistake."

This explains why Beckham was allowed to leave United at a time when most clubs would have fought tooth and nail to keep him as he entered the peak of his powers.

None of this takes away from his status as one of the best Man Utd players of all time, but his Old Trafford legacy is almost remembered as much for his battles with the boss as it is for his ability on the pitch.

A fantastic leader of men, Ferguson was quick to let any of his stars know when he felt they were in the wrong, even the most high-profile figures such as Beckham himself.

The Scot knew if he were to allow the more household names to do as they please, the pillars that hold up the values of United's dressing room would fall apart.

In his second autobiography, Ferguson explained why he didn't stand in Beckham's way as he signed for Real Madrid 18 years ago.

"The minute a Manchester United player thought he was bigger than the manager, he had to go," Ferguson explained.

"David thought he was bigger than Alex Ferguson. That was the death knell for him."

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