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Stories of 10 Footballers Who Became Broke After Retiring From Football. 4 of Them Are Africans

Being rich today doesn't mean that you're destined to be rich forever. Many people who were once rich became poor as a result of their extravagant lifestyle. Others, on the other hand, became poor after a failed investment which made them go bankrupt.

Do you know how it feels to move from grace to grass? I hope we never get to know such a feeling.

Let's examine the short stories of these 10 footballers who became broke after retiring from football. Many of them were involved in drugging and clubbing, while some of them became poor as a result of a failed marriage.

Paul Merson

Paul Merson is a striker or attacking midfielder who played for Arsenal FC between 1985-1997. While Paul Merson had a very successful football career, he had issues in married life which saw him get married three times to 3 different women. His Marriage broke mostly as a result of the drugs, gambling and alcohol addiction which he had as at the time.

Now, Paul Merson has started rebuilding his wealth, and he works for Sky Sports as a pundit.

He also talked about his battles with drug, gamble and alcohol addiction. Hopefully, other people who are still battling with addiction can learn from him.

David James

David James is an England International that played as a goalkeeper during his time. He had a successful career which saw him play for clubs such as Liverpool and Manchester City. He was also a very important part of the England national team that saw him get about 53 appearances for the team.

James troubles started after he divorced his wife in 2005. He started owing debts and when he could not pay back, he had to sell off a lot of his fortunes, including his signed shirts as a footballer.

James is now a manager for Kerala Blasters in India, and he also works as a pundit for BT Sports.

Diego Maradona

Diego Maradona is a top retired footballer who is a football and Argentine legend. He had a successful career which saw him play for clubs such as Boca Juniors, Barcelona, Napoli and Sevilla.

Maradona's problems started when he was at Barcelona. He was using drugs like cocaine, and the drugs started affecting his footballing ability. By 1991, Maradona had been dubbed by the media as a drug addict. By 2009, it was made open that Maradona has failed to clear a debt of about €37Million which he owed to the Italian government.

Now, Maradona works as a coach for Gimnasia de La Plata in Argentina.


Ronaldinho Gaucho is one of the best footballer ls of his generation. He plays as an attacking midfielder and also a winger. He had a very successful career which saw him win 2 FIFA World footballer of the year and a Balon d' Or title.

After his retirement, Ronaldinho was reported to be bankrupt at several stages of his career. There was a time his properties were seized after he lost was unable to pay the debt he owed. As of 2018, Brazil also grounded him for owing a debt of £1.75M.

Till now, it remains a shock to many football fans that a player like Ronaldinho could get bankrupt despite his long span of a successful playing career.

John Arne Riise.

John Arne Riise is another footballer who managed to go bankrupt despite having a very successful career. He played for top clubs such as Roma, Liverpool and Monaco.

While the reason behind his bankruptcy remains anonymous. In 2007, Riise was declared bankrupt after owing heavy amounts that he was unable to pay. As at that time, Riise was still a footballer earning about £50,000 per week at Liverpool.

Celestine Babayaro.

Celestine Babayaro is another successful footballer, but this time, from an African country, Nigeria. He also had a successful career which saw him playing for Chelsea FC in the Premier League.

The ex Chelsea man was declared bankrupt in 2011 and his neighbours even expressed that he couldn't even pay for the regular upkeep of his house. Only God knows what happened.

Emmanuel Eboue.

Eboue is another successful African footballer who ended up getting bankrupt. He played for a number of top clubs including Arsenal and Galatasaray.

But after he divorced his wife, he became very poor and homeless. Everything he had, including his investment we're under the control of his former wife. Eboue's story is tragic.

Eric Djemba Djemba

Djemba Djemba is another African footballer who managed to get in the list despite having a successful career that got him to top clubs such as Manchester United.

His problems started after his contract at Aston Villa was terminated. He suffered bankruptcy as a result of the extravagant lifestyle which he lived as a footballer. He was reported to have 10 4x4 cars and about 30 bank accounts.

Paul Gascoigne

Paul is mostly known as the most naturally talented English player of all time. He played to the likes of Boston United and Burnley.

Paul managed to avoid bankruptcy after managing to settle his debts. He works as a football manager.

Wilson Oruma.

Wilson Oruma is another African footballer of Nigerian heritage who went bankrupt despite having a successful career in the French league.

Oruma became mentally disordered after he was scammed/defrauded of an estimated 2 billion naira by a fake clergyman and some fraudsters who posed to be oil businessmen.

I hope these players serve as lessons to other people out there that the need to invest is pretty much important, regardless of how rich you are now.

And again, people have to be careful about the type of man/woman you marry or put in your house. Also, beware of friends that can lead you to live an extravagant lifestyle without ever talking about future investments.

I feel sad for these legendary footballers who somehow managed to fall into such a situation in life.

What do you think was the biggest mistake made by these footballers?

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Content created and supplied by: Larzzy (via Opera News )

Africans Arsenal FC Paul Merson


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