Footballer David Beckham has spoken about his role as an icon for gay men and his love of fashion.

The England star also said that his famous Giorgio Armani underwear ads were all him and no digital manipulation of his bulge took place.

“When people talk to me about being a gay icon I think of it as a great honour,” the 32 year old father of three told GQ.

“To have that kind of effect on so many people around the world, I was honoured.”

Mr Beckham, who is married to former Spice Gril Victoria, plays for LA Galaxy but has been loaned to AC Milan, has been subjected to press interest because of his clothing choices, such as a sarong.

“I’ve always been into clothes and fashion,” he told the magazine.

“It wasn’t a vain thing, it’s just that I love looking smart.

“I don’t do things for people to latch on to. If I see something I like I wear it no matter what I think people are going to say about me.”

Speaking about the underwear ads, which caused a stir across the world, he said:

“I would never have asked them to change anything, I was a bit apprehensive, and at the shoot I started getting nervous because I’ve never done pictures in my underwear before.

“It was a question of trying to find a good position that wasn’t too much.”