10 hot stories, including Victoria under ‘relentless pressure’, Nicole Kidman on making sacrifices and why life deadlines hold us back
FOR THE THIRD time in five months, Victoria and David Beckham were last week forced to fire-fight yet more rumours that their marriage is about to implode. The latest chain of events to rock the country’s most famous A-list couple – and to keep them on the front pages of the tabloids almost every day – came after an Australian TV interview with David, in which he claimed their marriage was ‘hard work’.
Then came reports that Victoria had been in tears for ‘two days’ following his insensitive and incendiary comments, and that she had spent time at a £950-a-night emotional well-being clinic in Germany. The designer even posted a picture of herself hiking nearby the resort. Then, further compounding the already tense situation, CCTV footage from the family’s £6 million Cotswolds home was released showing masked robbers trying to break in while the family were away.
So, as the couple arrived in Australia last weekend – for a half-term holiday with three of their four children, and to attend Prince Harry’s Invictus Games – it was understandable why Victoria looked stony-faced at the airport.
‘ Victoria is not in a good place,’ a friend told Grazia last week. ‘As much as she tries to hide it, the pressure of all this is really getting to her. She cannot believe she is in this situation again. Her marriage to David is constantly being questioned.
‘ Victoria had no idea that David would do an interview for Australian television and say what he did. In the midst of everything that has been going on, it was the worst possible thing he could say when she has done so much to try and counteract the constant back-biting and gossip. It was like throwing a lit match into a room full of petrol. She feels she is under relentless pressure and just wants it to stop.’
Indeed, given the amount the couple have endured since wild social media rumours claimed they were about to divorce in June, David’s comments – ‘ When you’ve been married for the amount of time that we have, it’s always hard work’ – have done nothing to stop speculation about the state of their 19-year marriage. The internet frenzy at the beginning of the summer forced spokespeople for the couple to denounce rumours of impending divorce as a ‘crock
of shit’. Then, last month, Victoria gave an interview to British Vogue in which she described the success of their relationship as being down to the fact that ‘we are stronger together than we are as individuals’. But what was intended as a celebration of the 44-year-old former Spice Girl’s 10 years as a fashion designer merely plunged her marriage into another gossip festival as David (who appeared on the inside pages and the subscriber’s cover in photographs with his wife and children) was absent from the family portrait on the main cover. The source said: ‘ That Vogue piece was a total own goal for Victoria in terms of shutting down all the talk about the marriage. David apparently said he just wanted it to be all about her, but the cover was a family picture. They even had their dog Olive in the shot. His decision made no sense and it just stirred up more talk. It hasn’t been this bad for them since his former assistant Rebecca Loos claimed she’d had an affair with him 14 years ago.’ David’s behaviour has also increasingly come into question. Over the past 18 months, the 43-yearold former England football captain appears to have put down a series of markers that could be seen as distancing himself from Brand Beckham.
Last year, he bought the £6 million mansion in Oxfordshire – the first house not jointly registered to the couple. And their property portfolio changed again this year when they got rid of their £25 million Beverly Hills home. In January, he launched his Major League Soccer team in Miami and announced he would need to spend a lot of time in the US, where he is currently looking for a penthouse apartment. He also this year pulled out of propping up Victoria’s fashion business, which he had previously injected £5.2 million into. Instead, last November she received a £30 million investment from a growth equity firm. This summer, it also emerged he had parted company from Brand Beckham creator Simon Fuller, who, after 23 years in charge of the family empire, now manages only Victoria’s business affairs.
Commentators have noted how on David’s Instagram feed there are few pictures of Victoria. In a photo they posted to celebrate their 19th anniversary in July, her hand was on his, but his hand was wrapped around a wine glass.
Last week, a source close to David refuted claims Victoria had been in tears over the television interview.
Meanwhile, a second source said, ‘ What David was actually trying to say in that interview is that no marriage is easy and, because they are in the public eye, because they made that decision to turn their family into a media brand, then they are constantly under the microscope, which just makes everything more difficult. Every marriage changes as the children grow older and work opportunities present themselves – in their case, you have to multiply all those things by a thousand because there is always so much going on.
‘ Victoria is not going to give up on this marriage and, whatever people think, she knows that she and David are absolutely right together. What people don’t realise is she feels every word – every picture is absolute stress.
‘ The reason they are in Sydney is to be with Harry and Meghan to support the Invictus Games. She knows how hard it’s going to be to be pictured this week. But she also believes they will eventually come out stronger. What they actually need is quality time together away from the spotlight, but with their schedules and busy lives, that seems difficult.’
WHAT DAVID AND VICTORIA NEED IS QUALITY TIME AWAY FROM THE SPOTLIGHT
L-R: the Beckhams in Sydney; Victoria and Harper with her Australian Vogue cover; David, Romeo and Cruz on top of the Harbour Bridge
Clockwise from above: VB at a German well-being clinic; David gives that Australian TV interview; Victoria at her London Fashion Week S/S ’19 show