Matthew Etherington, Stoke City's midfielder, has spoken out about his battle with gambling. The ex Spurs player detailed his struggle and the steps he has taken to recover his life.
Getting Life 'Back on Track'
He reached an all time low as he amassed over a million pounds in debt and reportedly received death threats from debtors. However, Etherington, who has been 'clean' of gambling for some time now, has put his life back on track by attending Gamblers Anonymous over the past six months.
"I go twice a week to Gamblers Anonymous in Birmingham," he told the Daily Mail. "You are just meeting like-minded people and you talk about things that can keep you off gambling. It has been a big help.
"I had to do something about it - and I've done that. Now I'd like to get on with my life... I would like to think they (gambling problems) are long behind me now. I've got over that and come out the other side."
Gamblers Anonymous Forever
Stoke are currently negotiating a contract extension for Etherington and the discussions include proposals to siphon some of his salary to pay off remaining debts.
Etherington's life may well be looking up now but he has a clear understanding about the nature of addiction. Gambling Anonymous is no short term cure and he says, "I'll do that (attend Gamblers Anonymous sessions) for the rest of my life."
Help is Out There for All
If you or anyone you know are experiencing an increasing dependence on gambling, we recommend the resources offers by Gamblers Anonymous UK.