Footballers more likely to be addicts: Expert

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London, Jan.22 (ANI): Addictions expert Peter Kay reckons footballers are more prone to gambling problems than most other people, and believes part of the trouble is stubborn managers refusing to accept outside help.

Kay, a former top chef with a drug and alcohol problem, and now chief executive of the Sporting Chance Clinic, helps treat behavioral problems among professional and amateur sports people.

"Addiction is a social problem which is also obviously going to rear its head in football. And, in fact, there is a higher propensity for professional footballers to become addicted to something than those people in other walks of life," The Mirror quoted Kay, as saying.

"There is a reason for that because professional footballers show higher traits of compulsive, obsessive behavior compared to other individuals. Footballers need those qualities to get them to the top. But those personality characteristics and attributes can also cause problems," he added.

The amount of free time players have, combined with the money they earn, leads them into gambling.

"Very rarely can addiction be a manager's specialty because he can rarely have come across people who can't stop gambling, for example," Kay said.

"A lot of managers, because of their egos and position, cannot admit they don't understand the problem. They go through a period of denial like the addicts themselves," he added.

Kay's organisation is largely funded by the PFA, and also backed by the FA and Premier League. (ANI)

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