David Beckham has confessed to sending the shocking leaked emails that have rocked his millions of fans worldwide.
But he has told friends they were written “in the heat of the moment” after he was passed over for a knighthood – and that some of them had been “doctored”.
The former England and Man United star was alleged to have branded the honours committee “unappreciative c***s”.
And sources say he is determined to continue working with UNICEF, insisting he had not helped the charity just to boost his chances of becoming a Sir.
Beckham, 41, was spotted on Saturday watching son Brooklyn at a London skate park after the wheels of his knighthood bid were pulled from under him by a website leak of emails from him and his close aides.
Friends say he claims the content of some of the emails has been changed.
The leaks reveal he wrote to long-time PR man Simon Oliveira after missing out on being a Sir in 2013.
After working for charities, including children’s charity UNICEF, and helping to front the London Olympics he had been a hot favourite to get the honour.
Referring to the New Year Honours OBE for opera star Katherine Jenkins, who had confessed to taking drugs in the past, Beckham is said to have raged: “Katherine Jenkins OBE for what? Singing at the rugby and going to see the troops plus taking coke. F***ing joke.”
Blasting the honours committee, Beckham, who won an OBE in 2003, said: “I expected nothing less. It’s a disgrace to be honest and if I was American I would of got something like this 10 years ago.”
In another leaked email he appears to refuse to donate $1m to an event run by UNICEF, declaring “it’s my f***ing money”.
The revelations caused a storm on Twitter, with users tearing into the global icon, believing his UNICEF work was just glory-seeking.
Among those attacking him was TV presenter Piers Morgan. He branded the multi-millionaire “repulsive” for his rant against singer Katherine Jenkins.
He added: “Oh. My. God. RIP Brand Beckham…”
And later he tweeted: “Nobody will be envious of David Beckham by tomorrow. They will all be sickened by him”.
But a close friend of Beckham said: “He is very calm at the moment because he knows the great work that he has done for UNICEF. But he is just saddened that people would question all of that work.
“Genuinely, he wasn’t as vitriolic as that, but you do say some things in private and in the heat of the moment.
“To be honest, he does feel that he has given so much to his country. And sometimes you say things in private that anyone would say and you don’t really mean it.”
Referring to an email about honours in which he is alleged to have written “unless it is a knighthood, f*** off”, the pal said: “While he was frustrated in those emails, he was over it the moment he sent them.
“Getting the knighthood is not what his work is about. He doesn’t care if he gets a knighthood or not.”
UNICEF figures largely in the emails, and those are the most damaging to his image as a caring children’s ambassador.
Read more at: http://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/david-beckhams-knightmare-football-legend-9759583