With billions of dollars pumped in by the TV revenues, Arab sheiks and Russian oligarchs, the modern-day soccer has undergone quite some transformation over the past two decades.
It’s the soccer players who are reaping rich rewards from this boom, taking millions of dollars home. For many of these footballers, gambling is something that comes naturally to them, especially because they have so much money sitting in their bank accounts. Gambling has had a huge impact specifically on sports in Ireland too. There have been many soccer players, from Ireland and internationally who have proven their skills both on the field and on casino tables.
Many of them have switched to online platforms these days, primarily because of the privacy offered by the Internet. It is not uncommon for these players to indulge in something like online craps in Ireland, from within the comfort of their hotel rooms, away from the public limelight! Let’s tell you about three such internationally-acclaimed soccer players who are well-known for their gambling habits.
Widely recognised for his stint with Manchester United, Wayne Rooney has won several titles as a striker with the Red Devils and used to be counted amongst the best strikers in the world at one point of time. He’s still actively playing football, and is presently on the rolls of DC United, the MLS club. Apart from his achievements on the football field, Rooney is an accomplished gambler too. He plays casino games and bets regularly on different sports. Of late, Wayne Rooney has been in news for signing a £ 7.8 million deal with Derby County, which is backed by an online casino. Back in 2006, he had reportedly accumulated a debt of £ 700,000 because of his gambling habits. At that time, he was actively betting on horses, football and even dogs.
Neymar became the most expensive football player in the world when he made a £ 198 million move from Barcelona to Paris St. Germain in August 2017. Well-known for his passion for the beautiful game and his skills with the ball, Neymar is a regular poker player off the field and even has a dedicated table to himself where he plays regularly with his best friends. He has even posted several videos playing poker with his friends in the past. Considering his love for the card game, he was approached by Pokerstars for a sponsorship deal. Right now he is a Pokerstars brand ambassador and actively takes part in many poker events, including the European Poker Tour.
Gerard pique enjoyed tremendous success with the Spanish football club Barcelona and is counted amongst the most iconic gamblers from the football world. He got addicted to casino gambling during his time at Manchester United. In fact, there came a point when the directors of the Barcelona football club were worried about him slipping into debt because of his addiction. However, he evolved into one of the few reputed gamblers who have control over their habit. You can spot him regularly at European Poker Tours, and he too has been the brand ambassador for Pokerstars.