Former Manchester United striker Louis Saha has lifted the lid on the perils faced by modern footballers as far as bankruptcy is concerned.
In an interview with L’Équipe Magazine, he was asked about how players end up losing wealth and Saha replied: “Bad investments and not planning for the long term, because athletes in activity often struggle to realise that their way of life will eventually end.
“But between addictions, divorces, bad investments and greedy entourages, it is ultimately multiple elements put together which makes them fall.
“For example, if an athlete has a gambling addiction, squanders his money without being careful, and his wife leaves him with half of his earnings, that puts them in great difficulty.”
Touching upon the subject of divorces, he went on to add: “From what I’ve observed, many women disappear as soon as their husbands’ careers end… And I count myself amongst those.
“Life is not the same for these wives, who, all of a sudden, find themselves at home with their husbands, who are pretty much depressed.
“Even after spending 10 or 15 years supporting their husbands, they sometimes lack recognition towards them and tell themselves, ‘I’m 40 years old, but now I want to live my life… So long!’
“Except that a divorce can cost a player half of his earnings.”
Saha played for United from 2004 to 2008 and has spent 14 seasons in total in the Premier League.