“I would say he has been a good player, I wouldn’t put him down as a great,” Waddle, 52, told BBC Radio 5 Live.
Beckham, 38, announced this week he’d retire at the end of the Ligue 1 season in France, where he’s played this season with champions Paris Saint Germain.
“You can go down a list of players from the Premier League or the 70s or 80s, whatever you want to do. I’ll be honest, Beckham probably wouldn’t be in the first 1000.”
Beckham, Becks, Golden Balls, whatever you want to call him, appeared 394 times with Manchester United, winning six Premier League titles and the Champions League. He also played 115 times for England.
“I think there has been a lot more talented players in the world. But he made the most of what he has got,” Waddle said.
“He has got a terrific image and used it very well. He never had a trick, wasn’t particularly quick, but he was very good at set-pieces and deliveries, he made chances and made goals and was fantastic for clubs.
“He said the right things, he sold shirts, he put money in the tills wherever he went and conducted himself well.”
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