SportSoccer

PHOTO SPECIAL - David Beckham's UNICEF match at Old Trafford

SoccerBy Kevin Palmer
Beckham's UNICEF game was played before a huge Old Trafford crowd
Beckham's UNICEF game was played before a huge Old Trafford crowd
Beckham back in the groove at Old Trafford
Beckham back in the groove at Old Trafford
Ferguson and Ancelotti returned as managers for the day
Ferguson and Ancelotti returned as managers for the day
Giggs back on the Old Trafford turf
Giggs back on the Old Trafford turf
Chelsea's John Terry was jeered by the Old Trafford crowd...even though he was on the home team!
Chelsea's John Terry was jeered by the Old Trafford crowd...even though he was on the home team!
Peter Crouch showed his acrobatic ability
Peter Crouch showed his acrobatic ability
Ferguson relished his return to the Old Trafford dug-out
Ferguson relished his return to the Old Trafford dug-out
Beckham showed his crossing ability is still impressive
Beckham showed his crossing ability is still impressive

David Beckham's UNICEF Match for Children at Old Trafford brought a welcome ray of light into the world on a miserable weekend - as some of the game's greats gathered to bring a smile back to faces.

The horrors of the terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday night shocked the world, but Beckham and his fellow soccer superstars succeeded in staging a event that offered a message of positive hope amid the prevailing misery.

French great Zinedine Zidane and Patrick Vieira pulled out of the game after the Paris attacks, but the charity game went ahead and included a respectful moment of silence of the victims of the horror in the French capital.

Luis Figo, Ronaldinho, Robert Pires, John Terry and Jamie Carragher were some of the stellar names taking part in the match, while there was also a good representation of Man Utd legends.

Edwin van der Sar, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and Phil Neville were among those taking part, while legendary United manager Alex Ferguson return to his familiar seat on the touchline to take charge of the Great Britain and Ireland team

One of the more emotional moments after the afternoon for Beckham came as he was substituted to a huge ovation and replaced with his son Brooklyn, who made his Old Trafford debut as a player.

This was not the first time Brooklyn has set foot on the pitch at the Theatre of Dreams, as he made an appearance when his Dad collected a Premier League title winners' medal back in 2000 (below).

 

Before his exit, Beckham Snr confirmed he still has the magic touch when putting a ball into the box, with his pinpoint cross setting up a goal for his former Man Utd team-mate Paul Scholes.

The result of the match was hardly the most significant statistic on an afternoon that raised thousands of pounds for UNICEF and again highlighted event curator Beckham's status as one of the true sporting icons of his era.