David Beckham’s representatives have hit back against leaked personal emails that painted the star in a negative light, claiming that they were “hacked and doctored”.
Football Leaks posted a series of emails reportedly obtained from a private server, which allegedly featured a series of rants from an irate Beckham complaining about not receiving a knighthood, despite his copious amounts of charity work. The emails, which were published in a front page story by The Sun, reportedly branded the honours committee “unappreciative c****” and, when discussing lesser awards, stated: “Unless it’s a knighthood f*** off”.
However, Beckham’s representatives have criticised the validity of the emails, saying in a statement (via Digital Spy) that the story was based on “outdated material taken out of context.”
“This story is based on outdated material taken out of context from hacked and doctored private emails from a third party server and gives a deliberately inaccurate picture”, the statement reads. “David Beckham and UNICEF have had a powerful partnership in support of children for over 15 years. The David Beckham 7 Fund specifically has raised millions of pounds and helped millions of vulnerable children around the world. David Beckham has given significant time and energy and has made personal financial donations to the 7 Fund and this commitment will continue long term.
“Before establishing the 7 Fund, David had supported UNICEF and a number of other charities over many years, including donating his entire earnings from PSG during his time playing there”, it continues. “David and UNICEF are rightly proud of what they have and will continue to achieve together and are happy to let the facts speak for themselves.”
According to The Sun, Beckham cited his work with UNICEF as a reason why he should receive the knighthood, with him bemoaning that classical singer Katherine Jenkins had been awarded an OBE. “Katherine Jenkins OBE for what? Singing at the rugby and going to see the troops plus taking coke. F***ing joke”, he allegedly wrote in reference to Jenkins’ admitted drug use.
The emails, which were first published by Spanish site El Mundo, also reportedly see Beckham’s PR manager Simon Oliveira suggest Beckham increase his charity work in order to obtain the knighthood. “This gives us even more reason to work this year on Unicef, the armed forces, and other charitable commitments”, an email from Oliveira reads.
David Beckham has been an ambassador for for UNICEF since 2005, launching 7: The David Beckham UNICEF Fund in collaboration with the charity in order to help children who are in danger. UNICEF released a statement regarding the alleged email leaks, writing that they “could not comment” upon the leaks, adding: “David Beckham has been a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador since 2005, and as well as generously giving his time, energy and support to help raise awareness and funds for UNICEF’s work for children, David has given significant funds personally.”