Football is a short career. 10-15 years at a push… and that’s the lucky ones.
Once it’s over, what do you do with yourself?
For those wanting to extend their stay in the game, the next natural step is taking your coaching badges. For more high-profile stars, it’s straight off to the warmth of the punditry studio.
However, not all footballers choose to take the conventional path when hanging up their boots.
Here are five footballers who decided to take on a whole new chapter after retiring…
Life After Football – Five Ex-Footballers With Completely Different Careers
1. ARJAN DE ZEEUW – DETECTIVE
Some unkind critics would say some of Wigan’s defending at Premier League level was criminal.
We shouldn’t be surprised, then, that former Latics centre back De Zeeuw has switched careers from last-ditch defending to detecting crimes. He’s now a member of the police force in Alkmaar back in his native Netherlands, specialising in forensics.
Despite now working a normal 9-5, the no-nonsense centre back hasn’t left his old life behind completely, captaining the Netherlands national police team.
2. GAVIN PEACOCK – PRIEST
Ex-Chelsea, Newcastle and QPR man Peacock turned his back on a cosy media career in 2008 to follow a higher calling. After completing punditry duties at Euro 2008, Peacock relocated to Canada to train as a minister, and now serves as an elder and pastor in Calgary.
The former Premier League ace has now written several books about religion and returned to our screens in 2018 with a BBC documentary about his faith and unusual journey from playmaker to the priesthood.
3. IAIN DOWIE – SALES DIRECTOR
Need some surveying advice?
We’ve got just the man.
Former Premier League boss Iain Dowie is still a familiar face on our screens as a media pundit, but not many people know he’s also embarked on a successful second career as an Associate Director at a leading surveying company in the north west of England.
We’ve all heard of a ‘suit manager’.
However, Dowie is now dressing to impress to apply his management skills in an entirely new setting.
4. TONY HIBBERT – CARP FISHERY OWNER
The Everton stalwart is a cult hero in the blue half of Merseyside for his low key, unflashy style in a career that spanned over 300 appearances for the club. Staying true to form, however, Hibbert opted for the quiet life after retiring by retreating to the French countryside.
After an impressive Premier League career, the former Toffees star treated himself to one luxury: a 33-acre carp fishery near Reims which he now runs as a business.
We just hope Hibbert is better at netting fish than he was at goals.
The hard-working right back famously never scored once in an Everton shirt during his 16-year stint.
5. GEORGE WEAH – PRESIDENT OF LIBERIA
Life after football can often seem mundane after the excitement of playing week in, week out.
That’s certainly not the case for our final footballer, George Weah.
Liberia’s greatest ever player made the most of his popularity back home after leaving the game behind. In fact, so much so, he now runs the country.
The former Milan, Chelsea and Man City was elected President of Liberia in January 2018, winning 60% of the vote in the final run-off.
Weah’s career – the ultimate game of two halves.
Do you know any footballers with strange careers?
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