British soccer star (and guy who married Posh Spice) David Beckham brought his handsome charm to the United States and, for a short, glorious moment, got us to care about soccer.
We all wanted to Bend it Like Beckham, even if we had no idea what that meant.
Becks became an instant celebrity when the former United Manchester and Real Madrid player came to the U.S. to play for the LA Galaxy in 2007, easily befriending Tom Cruise and Will Smith when he moved to Hollywood.
His 5-year, $32.5 million contract created much buzz, with the LA Galaxy selling over 5,000 season tickets in 48 hours–unheard of for the sport.
Before Beckham hit the field, his "handlers" kicked off a media blitz: the cover of Sports Illustrated, a 13-part Adidas ad campaign "Fútbol meets Football," starring Beckham and NFL running back Reggie Bush, a documentary on ESPN and a steamy W magazine spread featuring David and Victoria.
The tattooed-and-beautiful pair of David and Victoria Beckham are married with four kids. But the couple went through a rocky time several years ago.
In 2004, an ex-assistant alleged that she'd had an affair with David in a story that rocked the British tabloids. Three other women came forward and claimed they'd had affairs with Becks as well. David and Victoria were ultimately able to overcome the difficult time (Victoria says it made them stronger) and are still together.
David continues to model, flash his smile (famously while driving a speedboat during the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony). In 2013, Beckham agreed to play for the Paris Saint-Germain Football Club and donate his salary to charity.