Why David Beckham was wrong to keep his asthma secret

Ollie Irish

24th, November 2009


beckham asthma

[Photo: ESPN]

Just a day after Pies pointed out that Becks currently resembles a windswept junkie, news reaches us – and the rest of the planet – that Becks suffers from asthma, and has done since the age of four. He’s not a golden demigod after all – he’s just like the rest of us!

The midfielder was snapped puffing on an inhaler during the MLS Cup final, and one of his minions has since issued the following statement:

“David has suffered with this since he was a young boy but obviously it has had no effect on his performance. He has never sought to make it public but, if it does inspire any sufferer to think they can achieve great things, then so much the better.

“Some of the best athletes in the world suffer from asthma and there is no problem with his aerobic fitness.”

Looks like Team Beckham is keen to reassure the world – but especially Fabio Capello – that Prince David will be able to cope at high altitude in next summer’s World Cup.

Beckham’s asthma is mild – I suffer from mild asthma too – so he should be fine in South Africa (Frank Lampard also suffers from asthma, for example) but I think it’s very wrong – and indeed very selfish – that Becks has sought to hide his condition from the world, when he could have done a hell of a lot (see Paula Radcliffe) as an ambassador for the disease. For his spokesman to say, almost as an afterthought, ‘Hey, if some kids are inspired by this, fine by us…’ is not good enough. Be active…

Imagine how much money Becks could have raised for asthma research; imagine what a positive, shining message he could have sent out to the many thousands of kids with asthma; imagine how many more people would be aware of asthma with Beckham’s support in the last decade.

Instead, Beckham chose to conceal his asthma, I would imagine because he thought such a revelation would in some way taint his golden boy image. Well Dave, sometimes the weak become heroes. Shame on you.

Posted in Featured, MLS

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  1. Jesus says:

    Dude, seriously, sometimes your logic is skewed.

    Its a personal condition which he wanted to keep private. Several people who have disabilities like to ensure that they remain hidden. Its his personal choice really. I’ve always disliked his Hollywood image bu don’t fault him for THIS.

  2. Meji says:

    Agree with Jesus. Becks should do exactly what the fuck he wants to do lol. Scholes has asthma I don’t see him doing shit (he’s not close to the level of international superstardom as Becks but still)…Let the man do what he wants to do.

  3. Stanz says:

    He didn’t try to “keep it secret,” if he was he could simply have turned his back when he was puffing. If you have any form of asthma you will know that adrenaline inhibits it — in fact its a form of adrenaline that’s in many of the inhalers, the ones that can make you a bit shaky. The adrenaline produced by engaging in competitive sport can easily have been enough of an inhibitor that Beckham may not wheezed where he might have had an opportunity to share it with the public until a particular night he had played the 120th minute with bronchitis, something else he wasn’t hiding either.

    Beckham has always been active in the charities he’s chosen, all of which have been childrens’ charities, and with the charities his teams are active in. Whether its through his and his wife’s own trust that provides equipment for handicapped children, UNICEF, the anti-malaria campaign, or private visits and appearances he makes locally and on throughout the world on stops with his teams, he volunteers, acts as a spokesperson, and donates, well more than many.

    No one can say yes to every cause, although asthma is a worthy one, he also has a bit of OCD for example, and a dad with heart disease, and who knows what else: because it is none of our business. Beckham has had a camera up his arse since 1996, there may be many things about himself he’s chosen not to announce publicly, but that doesn’t mean he’s “hiding” them. Its just the shock that there’s a single thing the camera has somehow missed that’s got people in a huff. Find a lout that does nothing for anyone to slag off, you’re off base here.

  4. AFJ says:

    @ Stanz: Are you David Beckhams Biograher?

  5. UKhanDoIt says:

    I think you’re totally off on this one; If Beckham wants to keep it private its his choice. Where does it say he is obligated to divulge every single aspect of himself to the world? And I doubt he kept it private to protect his ‘golden boy’ image; he is a footballer – breathing is pretty important in this game. He probably didn’t want that to hold him back, or keep coaches/clubs from playing him. At least it started as that when he was young and he just didn’t tell anyone.

  6. Stanz says:

    @AFJ: No, just ancient, English and a news junky, which in the UK includes every charitable (or otherwise) act done in the footballing world. Also so disgusted with the behavior of so many useless public figures these days, that this headline just hit a nerve. Would it help if I added the info that Scholes does do sh*t on behalf of asthma orgs? And no I’m not a ManU fan either! Scholes was mentioned above.

  7. Ollie says:

    Interesting, intelligent comments – thanks.

  8. kaya says:

    Isn’t the inhalant ephedrine?
    I always thought asthma was one of those conditions of convenience for athletes. Kind of like the proper treatment for long hours in the saddle for cyclists is anabolic steroid cream. Or am I way off?

  9. HP says:

    I could swear I heard about his asthma years ago. In any case, I wouldn’t call it selfish if he kept this private. Like you said yourself, it’s mild asthma he has. Do you know for certain he doesn’t help any charities for asthma or give money to them? The ‘Shame on you’ comment at the end is completely over the top.

  10. todd says:

    other players have asthma and they don’t pull it out knowing that the cameras will pick up on it and then he can have an excuse for playing badly.

  11. eamogomez says:

    Ashey cole kept being a faggot quiet

  12. johnboy says:

    Gomez, you king!

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