To celebrate the end of the World Cup (congratulations to Germany by the way – worthy winners in my opinion) and the imminent return of the domestic football season (finally!), I have compiled a “dream team” of bankrupt footballers, together with their back stories in respect of their careers and financial circumstances.
There are some surprisingly big names in my squad, which I personally think that, in its prime, would have been in contention to win some silverware! At the time of writing this, I am not aware of any bankrupt football managers and, as such, that honour goes to John Barnes!
The former England shot stopper petitioned for his own bankruptcy in May 2014 following a costly divorce. He spent most of his career playing for the likes of Liverpool, Manchester City and Aston Villa in the English Premier League, before moving to my beloved AFC Bournemouth during the twilight of his career. Once a Armani model, he now does punditry work for BT Sport.
The Olympic gold medalist and Nigerian international was made bankrupt in January 2011. He was a key player and won numerous trophies with Chelsea in the English Premier League, before moving to Newcastle United. In July 2010, he officially announced his retirement from football.
The Norwegian international and 2005 Champions League Winner with Liverpool was made bankrupt by HM Revenue & Customs in March 2007 following an unpaid debt, estimated to be in the region of £100,000. It was thought that he was earning approximately £50,000 per week at Liverpool at that time and he promptly annulled his bankruptcy. He spent the last 3 seasons with Fulham and was released by the club following their relegation to the Football League Championship.
The Scotland international, who won the English and Scottish Premier Leagues with Blackburn Rovers and Glasgow Rangers respectively, was made bankrupt by a creditor in June 2010 with debts estimated to be in excess of £2m. Following his retirement from the game, he moved into coaching and, up until recently, was involved in the youth set up at Blackburn Rovers.
HM Revenue & Customs petitioned for the former Aston Villa and England international's bankruptcy in January 2012 following poor investments in the property market. At the peek of his career he earned £30,000 per week, but is now seeing out his playing days in non-league football.
"So good they named him twice", Sir Alex brought him to Manchester United in the hope of filling the void left by Roy Keane. However, it wasn't to be and the Cameroon international became a journey man featuring for numerous clubs including Aston Villa and Burnley. Following frivolous spending in an attempt to maintain the lifestyle of a Premier League Footballer, he was made bankrupt in September 2007. Newspapers reported that he once owned 10 4x4 cars and had 30 bank accounts. He joined St Mirran in early 2014, but he failed to impress and was recently released. He was also omitted from the Cameroon squad which travelled to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. There are also unconfirmed newspaper reports that he is due to make a cameo appearance in the forthcoming sequel to the Intbetweeners movie!
Once dubbed "the new George Best" at Manchester United, Keith Gillespie lost his entire career earnings, estimated to be in excess of £7m, which he attributed to his gambling addition. Despite continuing to play in the English Premier League with Newcastle United and Blackburn Rovers following his exit from Manchester United, he petitioned for his own bankruptcy in October 2010. He has since released an autobiography entitled "How Not To Be A Football Millionaire".
The England and Liverpool legend was made bankrupt by HM Revenue & Customs following "a tax oversight" shortly after he was sacked as manager of Tranmere Rovers. However, his solicitor ensured the bankruptcy was annulled within a matter of days.
Following a career mainly playing top flight football with Wimbledon, Charlton Athletic, Middlesborough, Southampton and Blackpool, he petitioned for his own bankruptcy in January 2011 claiming he was the victim of a property fraud. The former Jamaica international returned to Wimbledon in 2012, now the fourth tier of the English Football League.
Acquired by the late great Sir Bobby Robson at Newcastle United for £7m in July 2000, where he was thought to be earning an estimated £20,000 per week, he was adjudged bankrupt later in his career following a petition by NatWest in September 2010, whilst playing for Brentford. In 2012, he moved to the Tampa Bay Rowdies in the North American Soccer League.
He became the most expensive player in English football in July 1994 when he moved from Norwich to Blackburn Rovers, where he went on to win the English Premier League. Chelsea then signed the former England international for £10m. In July 2007 he was forced to retire from football following an eye injury. He was adjudged bankrupt in May 2014 "after being mislead in a multi-million-pound fraud".
I hope you have found the above enjoyable and informative. I think it goes to show that, notwithstanding some flippant spending, bankruptcy really can happen to anyone.
As such, I am pleased to announce that I will be launching a monthly “drop in” debt clinic at the Frost Group’s Bournemouth office on Thursday 21 August 2014.
The debt clinic, which will be confidential and free to attend, will be hosted by myself in our office at Unit 9, Basepoint Business Centre, Enterprise Close, Christchurch BH23 6NX. There is no need to make an appointment; however, if you or your client would like to guarantee their place please do not hesitate to contact me on 01202 83004.
The debt clinic will give you or your client an opportunity to discuss any aspect of their financial concerns, whether it be a business with cashflow difficulties and creditor pressure or an individual faxing mounting unsecured debts, I will endeavor to solve the problem at hand. I also experience of advising companies and individuals who are not necessarily in debt, but require advice as to the options available to them should them have a customer refusing to pay them or difficulties with book debt collection.
The debt clinic will take place on the third Thursday of every month between 14:00 and 17:30 and I look forward to seeing you there.
At Frost Group, we want to make things as easy as possible for you. That is why, if you can’t come to us, we’ll come to you. We operate face to face, nationwide meetings, wherever is most convenient for you.