“I should have realised that he was in trouble and in a dark place, but you carry on and just think he’s lost a bit of form,” were the words of Hull City F.C’s manager Steve Bruce, when he discovered the real reason behind his ace’s drug test.
Away from the highs, glitz and glamour of football are the lows. It the football or somewhat macho environment we tend disregard the issues that many footballers face, passing them off as people who don’t face such problems and if they do, they should be strong enough to carry on and not let it affect the on the pitch performances.
Whilst Chelsea fans worry about Thibaut Courtois’ injury woes, and the rest of us enjoy Tottenham’s continual attempts to offload a clinging on, Emmanuel Adebayor, somewhere in the background are footballers who are face testing times.
Having tested positive for cocaine, many spectators will have been quick to jump the gun at former England midfielder, Jake Livermore. Once and still regarded as a talented midfielder some may think the star has had a fall from grace, without recognising the problems he faces off the pitch.
“In this macho industry of alpha males, people don’t want to ask for help,” said Bruce. “Sometimes it takes a bigger man to ask for help and I think Jake has realised that.
Well done to Steve Bruce, a true manager who has stuck by his player during a testing time, when most people would have jumped ship. Understandingly and rightly, FIFA didn’t suspend Livermore but the news, draws attention to the problem us as spectators or people in general have when it comes footballers. Which is some of us are guilty of failing to footballers as ordinary people who go through rough patches.
Steve Bruce has continued to back his player, and tipped him to be a big part of the team’s promotion campaign back to the Premier. No doubt, if the team can get there Jake will have a big part, if the team do, maybe managers and the rest of us can learn something from this.