Windass will seek therapy after former Premier League star admits to suicide attempt
Dean Windass is trying to rebuild his life after admitting he tried to kill himself twice last week as booze and depression took over following his retirement.
The former Hull City striker, who scored the incredible play-off winner at Wembley four years ago in May, to take his home-town club into the top flight for the first time, will seek counselling at the Tony Adams Sporting Chance Clinic.
But he cannot check in until next month for his therapy sessions because the centre in London is fully booked with other former sportsmen and women who desperately need help for a range of problems.
Suicide bid: Former Hull star Dean Windass has revealed the harrowing extent of his depression
DEAN WINDASS' LONG AND WINDING ROAD
Former clubs – North Ferriby, Hull, Aberdeen, Oxford Utd, Bradford, Middlesbrough, Sheff Wed (loan), Sheff Utd, Bradford, Hull, Oldham (loan), Darlington, Barton Town Old Boys and Scarborough Athletic
As he waits, the 42-year-old is
trying to rebuild his relationships with wife Helen and sons Joshua and
Jordan after he was thrown out of the family home in North Yorkshire as
his drinking spiralled out of control.
Windass, is the same age as former
Wales manager Gary Speed who killed himself in November. He hopes his
admission of his problems will help other former players and said: ‘I
have cried every day for the last two years since retiring. 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.
‘I hope by speaking out it may help
anyone else who is feeling as desperate as I was and that the PFA or FA
can help. I don’t want people to feel sorry for me, it is my fault, but
hopefully it will someone out there.’
Plea: Windass feels the Professional Footballers Association must do more to help players through depression
The striker, who received hundreds of
emails and texts of support yesterday, quit playing professionally more
than two years ago after he was discarded by the Tigers’ boss at the
time Phil Brown. Tonight the pair will appear on the BBC’s Late Kick Off
together to talk about his problems.
Although he was briefly assistant to
Colin Todd at Darlington, before the pair were sacked, he has not worked
regularly in football for more than 18 months.
His father John died suddenly last
year after the pair had fallen out and his 18-year marriage to Helen, a
police officer, collapsed four months later. He ended up living back in
Hull close to his old family home.
He said: ‘Just days ago, alone and
drunk, I swallowed a load of tablets. Luckily my girlfriend, with whom
I’d recently split, turned up and realising what I had done made me
throw up by making me drink pints of water.
Once it's gone: Dean Windass admitted he struggled to cope with football
‘I knew I’d been a fool but I
couldn’t shake off the depression at feeling what a failure I’d become.
The next day another dark cloud emerged so I drowned my sorrows with
half a bottle of amaretto liqueur.
‘I was just over an hour’s drive away from my wife and family in Leeds but it
felt like the other side of the world. I tried to use a bed sheet to
hang myself and 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
He added: ‘I was quite a confident
person and footballer who contributed to the game for 20 years. Maybe I
took it for granted I’d get something at the end of it.’