It is rare that the world of sports and psychics come together, but football fans are sure to remember that the world-renowned psychic Uri Geller used his talents to aid footballing legend David Beckham.
The year was 2002 and David Beckham, the man at the centre of the England football team, had broken a metatarsal in the period leading up to the FIFA World Cup, putting his chance of participation in serious jeopardy. There was a picture of Beckham’s foot on the front page of the UK’s best-selling newspaper with the headline ‘Beck Us Pray’ ahead of Geller’s scheduled appearance on GMTV.
Every media outlet was covering the story of Beckham’s injury in great detail, with much of the country seriously concerned about his chances and England’s hopes of success at the World Cup seemed to be in shreds.
Beckham’s Metatarsal Injury
The injury was caused by a rough two-footed challenge from Aldo Duzcher in the second leg of Manchester United’s Champions League quarterfinal against Deportivo La Coruna. The challenge sent Beckham flying and the country into a panic.
After Beckham was taken from the field on a stretcher, United’s manager Sir Alex Ferguson said that there were doubts over whether Beckham would be fit for the tournament in South Korea and Japan. It was expected that it would take six to eight weeks for the injury to heal and even the Prime Minister expressed concern at a Cabinet meeting in Downing Street.
Revealing just how important football is to the nation, in the middle of an important meeting regarding the Budget and the situation in the Middle East, Tony Blair took some time to tell his colleagues that “nothing was more important” to the England’s team’s preparations for the tournament than the state of David Beckham’s foot.
At the same time as England was focused on the foot, the man responsible for the injury expressed very little concern, Duscher said, “Because it’s David Beckham and because he is a great player, everything is bigger. The media and the public give too much importance to the things that happen around him. I don’t need to speak with him about this because if this happened to a player from Deportivo, nobody would care. I wish Beckham is healthy for the World Cup. I hope that he can be fit to play in the tournament. What happened was unfortunate. I can honestly say that I went for the ball.”
Uri Geller Steps In to Help
While all this was happening, Uri Geller stepped in and urged the nation to put their hand on the television and concentrate on healing Beckham’s foot. He was aiming to use the collective will of the nation to speed up the healing process and ensure that Beckham was fit in time for the tournament.
Geller said, “I know it sounds light-hearted, but it is actually very serious. Send him healing energies, visualise the bone knitting together, unleash your healing powers. Send the energy to that foot.”
According to Geller, Beckham was watching the TV programme and Geller said that he could feel a huge surge of energy after calling upon the nation. Geller went on to say, “I definitely believe in the power of healing, the power of prayer and the power of positive thinking. I can feel the energy”.
It certainly seems that Geller’s and the nation’s efforts worked. Beckham was able to start in the tournament’s opening game against Sweden, even if he wasn’t quite at full fitness after a seven-week absence, and he then went on to make a fantastic contribution against Argentina a few days later.
After having considered quitting football after being sent off for kicking out against Diego Simeone when England were knocked out of the 1998 World Cup by Argentina, Beckham finally got back on track by leading his team to a 1 – 0 win. He scored a 44th minute penalty and it was a visible relief after the stress of the previous two months.
Unfortunately for England, the tournament eventually was lost, with Brazil knocking them out in the quarterfinals.
Geller’s History with Football
This was not the first time that Uri Geller used his skills to influence football. In 1996, he claimed that it was his fault that Scotland star Gary McAllister missed an important penalty against England in the European Championships. The ball could be seen to move just before McAllister took the shot and his penalty attempt was deflected over the bar by England goalkeeper David Seaman.
At the time, Geller was hovering over the stadium in a helicopter and claims it was his mind-power that caused McAllister to miss. In the weeks leading up to the game, Geller had appeared on television and accurately predicted the final 2 – 0 score and the name of England’s first goal scorer.
Following the match, both McAllister and David Seaman said that they were completely baffled by what happened. McAllister said that it was one of his worst ever penalty kicks. He made poor contact with the ball when it moved, so the shot had no power and it was easy for Seaman to deal with.
Speaking at the time, McAllister said, “That’s never happened before, the ball moving like that,” while Seaman added, “I noticed the ball started rolling, and I thought he might stop and start over. But Gary just went ahead and kicked it, and something told me to dive the right way and save it. The ball moving definitely caused him to miss.”
Afterwards, Geller said, “When that penalty kick was taken I willed Dave to dive to the right, and he did. And I willed the ball to move with pure telepathy. I tapped into the massive wave of positive vibrations from the England supporters and beamed them down to the players. I was like a receiver and a transmitter – I said before the game if all the fans visualised England winning, they would. The players felt my powers very strongly.”
However, more recently, Geller said that he would never interfere in the same way again, “because that was an unethical deed. I did it unethically, I realised later, I received thousands of hate letters from Scotland and this is why I bought a Scottish island, because I felt that I had to give something back to Scotland.”