Premier league hero Dean Windass: I’ve tried to commit suicide twice in the last week

 
In an astonishingly frank and courageous interview, former Premier League hero Dean Windass has revealed how last week he tried to commit suicide twice.

Little more than a month after the suicide of fellow footballer Gary Speed shocked the football world, ex Hull and Bradford striker Windass told how battles with drink and depression led him to try to take his own life.

The father-of-two has struggled to adjust to life since quitting football two years ago and says he has cried every day.

Shock: Dean Windass has told how he tried to commit suicide twice last week after slipping into the grips of depression

Shock: Former Premier League footballer Dean Windass has told how he tried to commit suicide twice last week after slipping into the grips of depression

Last year he split from Helen, his police officer wife of 18 years, after she found out he had been seeing a girl he’d met in a pub behind her back.
And just a few days ago, following the sudden death of his father, Dean attempted to take an overdose of pills.

Luckily a former girlfriend turned up at his door in the nick of time and, realising what he had done, forced him to drink pints of water until he was sick.
But the following day after slipping back into the grips of depression and drinking half a bottle of strong amaretto liqueur, he tried to commit suicide again.

Glory days: Dean Windass celebrates Hull's victory in the 2008 Coca Cola Championship Playoff Final match. He scored the goal that took his home-town club into the top flight for the first time and was nominated man of the match

Glory days: Windass celebrates Hull’s victory in the 2008 Coca Cola Championship Playoff Final match. He scored the goal that took his home-town club into the top flight for the first time and was nominated man of the match
Passion: Windass clashes with Arsenal's Patrick Viera during his days at Middlesbrough
Dean Windass turns out for Bradford against Coventry in 2003
Passion: (left) Windass clashes with Arsenal’s Patrick Viera during his days at Middlesbrough and (right) turning out for Bradford against Coventry in 2003
For a second time he was saved by a miraculous stroke of luck – when a friend of his knocked on the door.

At the height of his fame Windass was earning more than half a million pounds a year.
In 2008 he scored the goal that would take his home town club Hull into the top flight of English football for the first time in their 104-year history.
He also appeared in the Premier League for Bradford City and Middlesbrough and played in the Scottish Premier League with Aberdeen before ending his professional career, which spanned 19 seasons, in 2010.
Loved by the fans for his passion on the pitch, with a beautiful wife and loving family it seemed he had it all.
But after squandering most of his fortune on clothes and top-of-the-range cars Windass has been left almost bankrupt, unable even to pay for his son’s car insurance.
After retiring from playing Dean had hoped to move into management. But things didn’t work out and he found it impossible to get work.

Family: Windass split from Helen, his wife of 18 years, after she found out he had been seeing a girl he had met in the pub. The pair have two children together

Family: Windass split from Helen, his wife of 18 years, after she found out he had been seeing a girl he had met in the pub. The pair have two children together
Difficulties: Windass has struggled to adjust to life since retiring from football two years ago

Difficulties: Windass has struggled to adjust to life since retiring from football two years ago

Without the day to day routine that football had provided for so many years he quickly spiralled into a self-destructive lifestyle, filling most of his days with trips to the pub.
And with his reputation as a local hero, fellow drinkers were only too eager to keep buying him pints.
Windass, who at 42 is the same age as Gary Speed, told The People newspaper of his troubles which include the breakup of his 18-year marriage, drinking and financial worries.
He said: ‘People outside football think we have it all. But I was in a hole that I honestly didn’t know how to get out of.

Windass said the suicide of Wales manager Gary Speed in NOvember last year had a huge impact on him

Windass said the suicide of Wales manager Gary Speed in November last year had a huge impact on him

‘Just over a week ago I hit rock bottom and decided to end it all.
‘I first took an overdose and when that didn’t work tried to hang myself. I felt so alone and believed I had nothing to live for.
‘I need to sort myself out which is why I’m speaking out now. It’s part of me getting better – part of the healing process.
‘People have this image of me as this big strong man who can take anything life throws at him. But I’m not ashamed to say I wanted to end it after a string of setbacks.”
‘I knew I’d been a fool but I couldn’t shake off the depression at feeling what a failure I’d become.”
Windass said he could not cope after finishing his career and began drinking, often consuming 15 pints of lager and lime.

He said his marriage broke up and with little income, estranged from his family and grieving for his father John who had recently died, he decided to kill himself.
Luckily a former girlfriend turned up and saved him.
He said the following day, he tried again to take his own life.
‘I tied it to a handrail at the top of the stairs but it was too long. I was quite drunk and couldn’t get it to work so I got a belt instead. At that point a friend came round so I couldn’t go through with it.”
He added: ‘We’re not the brightest but you play football all your life. There are hundreds of footballers in the same boat (after retirement). There is nothing to get up for in the morning.’

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: