Former Manchester United striker Michael Owen opens up on his relationship with David Beckham at Real Madrid
Former Manchester United striker Michael Owen has opened up on why he and fellow former Red Devils man David Beckham did not socialise together during their time at Real Madrid.
Owen, who scored 40 goals for England, earned a move to the famous Santiago Bernabeu in August 2004 after spending eight years at Liverpool.
The switch to the Spanish capital saw Owen link-up with England teammate Beckham who had signed for Madrid from United just over 12 months earlier.
But despite the pair being the only Englishmen in the Madrid squad, Owen, who is now a regular pundit for BT Sport, has revealed that he and his partner, Louise, would rarely spend time with Beckham and his wife, Victoria, away from football.
Writing in his autobiography, Michael Owen: Reboot – My Life, My Time , Owen, who spent spent three seasons at Old Trafford, said: “As much as we ended up living close to David and Victoria Beckham and were two English families living abroad in the same city, there wasn’t much in the way of social life as far as them and us were concerned.
“Given that both Louise and Victoria were quite lonely and both looking after young kids, they’d occasionally see each other while we were training. That was the extent of the friendship, however.
“This perhaps wasn’t a surprise given that, by the time we found ourselves in Madrid together, David and I had even less in common than we ever had.
“I certainly didn’t like wearing the trendy gear or mingling among socialite company.
“David and Victoria on the other hand, were both bona fide superstars in their own right.
“They were operating on a completely different stratosphere from a social perspective.
“I never once got the impression I was on the inner circle of David’s group of friends.”
Despite being awarded the chance to play for Real Madrid, Owen’s stay in Spain would last just one year before returning to England, joining Newcastle United in 2005.
Despite Owen’s openness on his relationship with Beckham at Madrid, he has also revealed that he still has strong feelings toward his former England skipper over his sending off at the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France.
On a night of contrasting emotions against Argentina 21 years ago, Beckham was sent off whilst Owen showcased his talents to the world by scoring a wondergoal at the age of just 18.
The night would end in disappointing circumstances for the Three Lions, as they would once again suffer penalty shoot-out heartache, forcing them to end their World Cup adventure in the last-16.
And Owen blames Beckham for the Three Lions’ exit, saying: “While it was clearly premeditated, it was immature and petulant more than it was violent. But for me, that almost makes it worse.
“All I can say is that, as I sit here now writing this book, knowing how lucky a player is to appear in one World Cup, never mind more than one, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that what David did that day hadn’t let every single one of that England team down.
“Did he deserve the abuse he got afterwards? Certainly not. What human being needs to see his or her effigy being burned?
“But David let us down, and I still hold some resentment about it today.”
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