Football legend David Beckham says his lasting marriage to his wife Victoria is built on love.

The 41-year-old English retired midfielder discussed on Sunday’s episode of Desert Island Discs on BBC Radio 4 the secret behind his 17-year marriage to the 42-year-old designer.


“I think [we’re still together] because we’re a strong family unit,” Beckham said. “We’ve got strong parents and we were brought up with the right values.”

“Of course you make mistakes over the years, and we all know marriage is difficult at times. It’s about working through it, and we’ve come up against tough times. But we know each other better than anyone else knows us,” he added.

“Do we stay together because it is a brand? Of course not. We stay together because we love each other. We stay together because we have four amazing children,” the star shared.

Beckham and Victoria Beckham married in July 1999 after two years of dating, and share 17-year-old son Brooklyn, 14-year-old son Romeo, 11-year-old son Cruz and 5-year-old daughter Harper. Victoria Beckham said in the October issue of British Vogue that she immediately fell for the soccer star.

“Love at first sight does exist,” she wrote in a letter to her younger self. “It will happen to you in the Manchester United players’ lounge — although you will get a little drunk, so exact details are hazy.”

“While the other football players stand at the bar drinking with their mates, you will see David standing aside with his family. (He’s not even in the first team at this stage — you are the famous one.) And he has such a cute smile,” the designer recalled.

Beckham retired from professional soccer in 2013 after playing for such teams as Manchester United, Real Madrid and LA Galaxy. Victoria Beckham came to fame with the Spice Girls and has since launched her own fashion lines.