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Revisiting History: Beckham Signs With Real Madrid

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The David Beckham era started 13 years ago this summer. What would it have been like without him had he gone to FC Barcelona instead?

Denis Doyle/Getty Images

There have been a lot of stars to come though the Royal Whites clubhouse. Thirteen years ago (this summer), one man came to Madrid after rumors had him going to FC Barcelona. This isn't the first time a high value transfer target almost ended up with our rivals Barca - ex. Alfredo Di Stefano's transfer that defined an era in Real Madrid history.

Newly elected Barca president Joan Laporta actually ran on the platform that if he were elected president of the club he would bring in David Beckham, as Manchester United were keen to transfer him. Barcelona had announced that they and United had come to a principle agreement. Madrid President Florentine Perez signed him away as part of the Galácticos era.

He signed a €35 million four year deal. The deal was announced the first of June in 2003, but that transfer wasn't complete until a month later on July 1st.  He would be at the time, only the third Englishman to play for the team. The other two were Steve McManaman and Laurie Cunningham. Keep in mind this is a team that already had Zindedine Zidane, Raúl, Ronaldo, Figo, Iker Casillas and more.

The aforementioned Alfredo Di Stefano presented Beckham with the famous white jersey. Beckham went on to wear the #23 as Raúl was wearing the #7 that he wore at United. The reason behind the 23 kit was that Beckham was a big Micheal Jordan fan. He was also reunited with Carlos Queiroz who was signed to take the reigns of the club the week before Beckham was introduced to the press. Queiroz (he was one of many during Becks time at Madrid) was Sir Alex Ferguson's assistant at United the season before.

Between that and the world class players in the team, it didn't take long for him to make the adjustment from the Premier League to La Liga. He scored in the home leg in a 3-0 win against RCD Mallorca that set the tone for the start of the season. It was Real Betis that fell victim to Beck's first La Liga goal.

His goal was less than three minutes in. (build up starts at about :25 seconds.)

Becks picked up 5 goals in his first 16 appearances while playing in a three man midfield next to ZZ. Queiroz favored a 5-3-2 formation with the fullbacks joining the attack (boy that sounds familiar).

David Beckham won only two trophies in his time at Real Madrid: The 2003 Spanish Super Cup and the League title in 06/07. He appeared 155 times, scoring 20 goals and completing 33 assists. He was solidly 2nd in assists in La Liga during his time at Madrid until his final season when he led that  category.