Why David Beckham wore the No.23 shirt at Real Madrid and LA Galaxy
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David Beckham's shirt number at Real Madrid and LA Galaxy was inspired by one of the greatest athletes of all-time.
Beckham sported the legendary No.7 shirt at Manchester United, but that number was occupied when he signed for the La Liga giants in 2003.
Club icon Raul was in possession of the No.7 shirt so the then-England international had to opt for another shirt number, which was inspired by none other than Michael Jordan.
The former Basketball phenom made the No.23 shirt famous following his epic spell at the Chicago Bulls, where he won six NBA Championships.
And Beckham admitted he picked the No.23 shirt because of Jordan. Speaking in 2012, he said: "I chose the number 23 because of Michael Jordan.
"When I first joined Real Madrid, I’d worn number 7 for many years for Manchester United."
Beckham added: "And when I moved to Real Madrid, Raul wore number 7 so there was no way that I was even think about taking it off of him and I don’t think it would have been accepted very well if I had even asked that question.
"So, 23 was available and I’d always been a huge fan of Michael Jordan and I’ve loved him as a player and a person.
"Everything that he represented. Everything that he did in his career. I was a huge fan so yeah it was a no brainer. And then when I moved over here... it was just kind of a number that I wanted to keep because I’ve been successful with it with Real Madrid, and like I said being a fan of Michael Jordan."
The Man United legend acknowledging Jordan's number is a testament to the American's influence and star power.
Unfortunately for Beckham, though, the No.23 shirt wasn't available at AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain.
Instead, he wore the No.32 shirt at Milan then PSG, continuing the use of the digits 2 and 3.