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Footballers Who have Dealt With Gambling Addiction

There are many footballers who have lost huge sums betting on sports or gambling at casinos. We look at some players who dealt with gambling addiction.

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Gambling addiction is a very serious matter, and it is something that can affect all types of people. While footballers at the highest level get paid extremely well, often have luxury lifestyles, and get VIP treatment wherever they go, this does not mean that they are not going to be impacted by gambling problems.

There are many footballers over the years who have lost huge sums betting on sports or gambling at casinos. Even the best players can fall foul of addiction and get stuck into a spiral of losses. This article will look at some of the high-profile footballers who have dealt with gambling addiction.

No matter if people are using non-GamStop casinos, online sportsbooks, physical casinos, or local poker rooms, there are more ways than ever to engage in gambling activity in the UK today.

Michael Chopra

Chopra has played at the highest level of club football in England, lining out for the likes of Sunderland and Newcastle United during his career. He began placing bets at the age of 17 and he says that during his Newcastle career that he was gambling as much as £30,000 of cash on the team bus on the way to games. He believes that during his career he lost over £2 million to gambling. He was even subject to a British Horseracing Authority investigation for suspicious betting activity.

Matthew Etherington

Etherington had a solid career in the Premier League, but it was tainted by his gambling addiction. In 2010, he admitted that he had lost over £1.5 million by gambling. His main area of focus was on horse racing and poker, with the worst of this situation happening when he was playing for West Ham United.

Paul Merson

Merson was a wizard on the pitch when he was playing with the likes of Arsenal and England. However, he struggled with various issues, including alcohol and gambling addiction. He said it was when he quit drugs and alcohol initially that he took up gambling. He eventually racked up debts worth £7 million and he said the efforts to give up gambling were tougher than giving up any type of substance. He relapsed with his addictions in recent years and is still striving to get past these issues.

Kenny Sansom

Sansom was a key player for England and Arsenal during his career. It was only recently that he detailed his struggles with gambling over the years. The now 54-year-old stated that as a result of his alcohol and gambling addictions that he has become destitute and bankrupt.

Eidur Gudjohnsen

The Chelsea legend had a long and successful career on the pitch, but he also fell into the rut of gambling addiction. It all began when he was recovering from an injury. He said that in a matter of months, he had lost nearly half a million pounds through the likes of blackjack and roulette. He compared the feeling he would get from having a winning bet to scoring a goal. He built up debts of £6 million and eventually managed to kick the habit.

Wayne Rooney

The Manchester United and England legend has had his various battles over the years. In 2006 as a young player, he had racked up debts from gambling of £700,000. This was through betting on the likes of dogs, horses, and football.

Joey Barton

Joey Barton was a footballer who used to often grab the headlines for all the wrong reasons. He had well-documented problems on and off the pitch. His career on the pitch came to an end as a result of a six-month ban from the FA for breaking betting rules. He placed more than 1,250 bets during the course of his playing career and he stated that sometimes he even placed wagers on the games that he was playing in. However, he did underline that match-fixing was never something that he got involved with. Barton has since recovered from his gambling addiction and is now in football management.

Scott Davies

Scott Davies is an Irish international who spent most of his career playing in the lower leagues of football in England. His gambling addiction started when he first started getting a paycheque for playing football and escalated over the years, racking up big losses at casinos. He eventually sought help and now visits clubs with EPIC Risk Management talking about the dangers of gambling.

David Bentley

The former England international quit the game at an early age after falling out of love with football. He began his gambling when he was a youth at Arsenal at 14 years old. He started with sports betting but this expanded into everything from online poker to betting on dogs and American sports. His girlfriend and agent both helped him to get past his addiction and is now a successful businessman in Europe.

Dominic Matteo

The former Liverpool and Scotland defender had a high-profile gambling problem during the course of his career. This ultimately led to him owing about £1 million in gambling debts and he had to go into bankruptcy. In one instance, he placed £100,000 on a single horse during a race. Matteo released a book in 2011 which outlined the negative impact that gambling has had on his life. He now strives to raise awareness of the dangers of gambling and tries to make sure that other people avoid the mistakes that he made during his career.

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