These footballers were delight to watch on the green turf as they used their skills to win lots of hearts.
They were fans favorite but their careers went down the drain, they destroyed their own careers because of alcohol, womanizing and drug abuse.
YEN.com.gh brings you the top 6 footballers whose illustrious careers were destroyed because of the aforementioned things:
1. Mario Balotelli - Italy
He is regarded as one of the finest footballers. However, Balotelli career is going down the drain. French side Nice wants him to stay but the Italian wants to leave. The big problem for him is that no club is interested in him so far. He joined AC Milan in 2015 on a season-long loan deal but the conditions in the deal is laughable.
In the deal, he was banned from smoking, visiting clubs and extravagant hairstyles. The deal could not save his career either. He wanted to return to Liverpool but Jurgen Klopp did not want him. Nice saved his career but now he wants to leave again. It is a shame that such a talented player and a goal poacher is not likely to realize his full potential.
2. Tony Adams – England
Arsenal legend Tony Adams is probably another footballer who struggled with alcoholism. However, he accepted his problem and came out to admit he was struggling with the alcohol abuse in 1996. He got help and was lucky to continue playing until 2002.
3. Diego Maradona - Argentina
1986 World Cup winner Diego Maradona is never far away from scandals. In 2018 finals in Russia, FIFA banned him from the Stadium for swearing whenever his country scored a goal. The legendary footballer has always attracted controversy. The world knows about his cocaine addiction that resulted to a ban. However, in his biography, he said he believes things could’ve been better for him if he avoided a whiskey bottle he enjoyed every night. It is shocking to hear that given how great he was on the pitch. He helped Napoli lift UEFA Cup as well as Serie A crown twice.
4. Paul Gascoigne – England
Paul Gascoigne is yet another British star who has struggled with alcoholism. The former Tottenham Hotspur, Newcastle and Lazio midfielder is described by England Football Museum as “the most naturally gifted English midfielder of his generation”
Alcohol did not only destroy his career but also his coaching career after retirement. He has been in and out of rehabs but the problem never seems to go away. These days he is getting better but nobody knows how long the situation will remain like that.
5. George Best (Died 2005) - England
The former Manchester United striker is probably the best example of what alcohol and substance abuse can do to a footballer. He led the club to 1968 European Cup and was named the European Footballer of the Year and FWA Footballer of the Year. He was a mavel and a genius.
However, alcohol and women ended his career prematurely mainly because of lack of fitness. The more he scored goals on the pitch, the more famous he became and this meant even more women and more alcohol. He once said, “I spent a lot of money on booze, birds (women) and fast cars – the rest I just squandered”. The experts and pundits said he could’ve won many more accolades had he not partied so much.
6. Garrincha - Brazil
Brazil best player before Pele emerged was called Garrincha. The star was in the team that lifted the World Cup in 1958 and 1962. The legendary story is used in all academies in the country as an example of how bad life can get if a footballer lacks discipline. He dedicated his life to alcohol and women. Like George Best, he died in 1983 from a liver disease aged only 50 years old. He left behind 14 known children. There is no doubt he had more.
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