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Saturday, 2 November, 2002, 18:44 GMT
Just an ordinary couple?
Posh and Becks
BBC News Online charts the rise of Britain's "most famous couple".

As teenagers David Beckham and Victoria Adams could easily have met in a West End nightclub, fallen in love, married and lived happily ever after like thousands of other anonymous couples.

Two things prevented it - his prodigious football talent and her good fortune in being plucked from obscurity for the Spice Girls.

Beckham, as arguably the most talented English footballer of his era, would no doubt have been famous whoever his wife was.

But the combination of a world class footballer with a world famous pop star was manna from heaven for the British tabloids.

Famous footballers' romances
Wolves and England star Billy Wright married one of the Beverley Sisters, Joy, in the 1950s
George Best went out with Miss World Mary Stavin
Everton defender Pat van den Hauwe wed model Mandy Smith, the former wife of Bill Wyman, in 1993.
England midfielder Jamie Redknapp married pop star Louise Nurding in 1998
Victoria Adams was born in 1975 and was brought up in affluent Goffs Oak, Hertfordshire.


Her father, electronics engineer Tony, used to drive her to school in a Rolls-Royce and their house boasted a pool.

It was this background, rather than her accent, which led Spice Girls manager Simon Fuller to christen her Posh Spice.

After an unremarkable childhood she left school with a burning ambition to get into showbusiness.

In March 1993 she answered an advert in The Stage which was looking for girls who were "street smart, extrovert, ambitious and able to sing and dance".

Billy Wright
Billy Wright...married singer Joy Beverley in the 1950s
She applied and was signed up, along with unknowns Melanie Chisholm, Geri Halliwell, Melanie Brown and Emma Bunton, by father and son team Bob and Chris Herbert, who manufactured an all-girl band by the name of Touch.

But Touch did not have the Midas, and in 1996 the girls ditched the Herberts and joined manager Simon Fuller, who repackaged them as The Spice Girls and gave them a catchy song called Wannabe.

David was born in 1975 in Leytonstone, east London, to a working class family - father Ted was a kitchen-fitter, mother Sandra a hairdresser.

Spotted by Manchester United's scouting network he was recruited, from under the noses of West Ham, Arsenal and Spurs, and signed schoolboy forms at the age of 14.

Class act

Only weeks after Wannabe went to number one, David Beckham seared himself on the public consciousness with a spectacular 50-yard goal against Wimbledon on the opening day of the 1996/7 season.

Within a month he was in the England side.

In 1997 he met Victoria when Melanie Chisholm (a Liverpool fan), came along to a United game at Old Trafford.

David is actually very deep - he's also a modern man

Victoria Adams
The relationship blossomed and when they announced their engagement it made front page news in all the tabloids.

Beckham's profile reached a new level during the 1998 World Cup when he was sent off for a petulant kick at Argentina's Diego Simeone.

Victoria was on tour in the US with the Spice Girls at the time and he flew to New York to be with her and to escape the English press, which was castigating him for spoiling the team's chances.

Happy couple

It was while they were in New York that their son, Brooklyn, was conceived.

In March 1999 Victoria gave birth in London and the couple completed a tempestuous 12 months by marrying in the Republic of Ireland in July.

Photographs from the "wedding of the year" were sold to OK! magazine for a princely sum. Critics said two thrones, the centrepiece of the event, were garish and symbolic of their giant egos.

Victoria Beckham
Victoria Beckham performing her solo single
The Beckhams now live in a luxury mansion in Sawbridgeworth, Hertfordshire. Football pundits have consistently claimed Victoria's unwillingness to move to Manchester may force Beckham to seek a move to a London club.

Victoria finally launched her own solo career, collaborating with Dane Bowers, formerly of Another Level, and dance masters Truesteppers on the single Out of Your Mind.

It missed out on the number one spot to Spiller's Groovejet but she received a better than expected welcome from music critics and went down well with the crowds in Ibiza.

But her solo career quickly took a nosedive and subsequent singles failed to sell as well.

Her album, VB, cost a reported 5m to make but only sold about 50,000 copies and she parted company with her record label, Virgin, in June.

At the other end of the spectrum David has cast aside his villain status to rise to the exulted position of hero, following his free kick against Greece which secured England's entry into the 2002 World Cup.

His every kick and haircut is documented and he picked up the BBC's Sports Personality of the Year Award in 2002.

The World Cup in Japan ensured his hero status as he scored a penalty in England's win over of arch rivals Argentina.

Victoria could not travel out to be with her husband during his triumph because she was already heavily pregnant.

Romeo Beckham was born on 1 September 2002 at the exclusive Portland Hospital in London.

The couple are in an invidious position. Their every move is dissected by the media and they are expected to act as role models, although deep down they are simply an ordinary couple.

Then again...they do have the looks, money and talent to compensate.

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