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David Beckham’s controversial £10million Qatar deal may have narrowed his chance of a knighthood

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David Beckham’s controversial £10million Qatar deal may have narrowed his chance of a knighthood

  • The expensive deal makes Beckham the face of the World Cup in Qatar
  • He claims to be able to effect change from within and use football ‘for good’
  • But the deal prevented him from becoming ‘Sir’ – an honor he has longed for

A new attempt to knight David Beckham has failed, The Mail on Sunday understands.

The former England captain would have been formally nominated and included in the official commendations for the honour.

But despite removing tax hurdles believed to have stood in the way of previous attempts to become ‘Sir’, he was again unsuccessful.

Sources suggested last night that his decision to sign a controversial £10m deal to become the face of this year’s World Cup in Qatar would have hampered his chances.

The deal, unveiled by The Mail on Sunday last February, sparked widespread criticism, given Qatar’s poor record on civil liberties and gay rights.

Embarrassing emails from 2013 revealed Beckham wrote: ‘Unless it’s knighthood, f*** off’

Beckham attends the Doha Forum in Qatar ahead of the highly anticipated FIFA World Cup

Beckham attends the Doha Forum in Qatar ahead of the highly anticipated FIFA World Cup

An insider said there were fears the Qatar deal could antagonize him with the honorary commission examining the nominations.

“David has done an extraordinary job, but the Qatar deal was not necessarily a wise thing to sign if he wants to become Sir,” said a source. ‘It has a terrible look.

“He is taking a lot of money to promote a country where women and gays are vilified. Now that the money is all round and his huge contribution to the cause, the Qatar issue is now an issue that stands out to him.”

Beckham insists his involvement with Qatar offers the opportunity to create change from within and ‘use football as a force for good’, but gay magazine Attitude accused the former Manchester United midfielder of hypocrisy after he praised Blackpool’s Jake Daniels for his coming out.

In a scathing Instagram post, Attitude — whose cover the ex-footballer famously appeared on in 2002 — wrote: “David Beckham continues to keep his money as far from where his mouth is when it comes to the LGBTQ community.”

Beckham’s representatives approached HM Revenue & Customs two years ago to sort out his finances after he became entangled in a tax avoidance scheme.

Sources say Beckham and his wife Victoria paid a “significant amount” and that Beckham supporters, with clear financial health clearance from the IRS, were free to resume their bid to knight him. The 47-year-old was awarded an OBE in 2003 and Victoria received the same honor in 2017.

Five years ago, embarrassing emails revealed that Beckham had labeled the honors commission in 2013 as “ungrateful ****s” and rejected lower honors by writing, “Unless it’s knighthood, fuck off.” Beckham’s team says he has a long track record of supporting charities, including Unicef, where he has been a Goodwill Ambassador for 18 years.

He has raised £50 million for charity and was also instrumental in winning the rights to host the 2012 London Olympics.

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