Wayne Rooney candidly shared his early struggles with alcohol as a means of coping with the pressures of fame during the early stages of his career.
In a recent podcast hosted by former rugby league star and Motor Neurone Disease advocate, Rob Burrow, the Birmingham manager delved into the challenges he faced as a young man in the limelight.
Rooney, a football icon renowned for his time with Manchester United and the English national team, made his debut for Everton at the age of 16 and received his first international cap at 17.
Joining Manchester United at 20, his meteoric rise in football was accompanied by a significant personal toll.
The now 38-year-old Rooney disclosed, “During my early twenties, alcohol became my way of escape.I’d retreat to my home and spend days isolated, often drinking to excess until I passed out. It was a coping mechanism because I didn’t want to be around people.
There were moments of embarrassment and feeling like I’d let others down. I was at a loss for how to handle it all, particularly when I resisted seeking help and guidance from others.
This led me to a prolonged period of feeling emotionally low. Fortunately, I’ve since learned to open up and seek support when facing issues.”