Monday, January 27, 2020

Top 10 Players with Weirdest Careers After Football

Milos Markovic in Editorial, Soccer Specials 25 Sep 2017

Embed from Getty Images

The career of a professional footballer often is short-lived and it rarely goes on to fill out a long-lasting period of a player’s life.

Football is a physically demanding discipline and stars who get to play for more than two decades can count themselves fortunate.

Still, with footballers usually finishing their careers around 35 which is taken as a standard of sorts, many of them decide not to live out the rest of their days spending the extravagant levels of wealth but do the opposite.

A good number of footballers decide to have a meaningful life after football, some perhaps an even more exciting one than that in the game.

Rio Ferdinand seems to be the last in line with his decision to become a professional boxer at the age of 38. Former England and Manchester United defender is currently a pundit for BT Sport and BBC, but he seems to be lacking a competitive edge and has announced his wish to get inside the ring to also fight with trauma left after his wife’s passing.

With Ferdinand getting ready to step into the boxing ring we took a look at some rather impressive post-football careers.

Rio and these nine below make a fantastic list:

Arjan de Zeuw

Football fans remember him from his playing days in England with the likes of Barnsley, Wigan Athletic, Portsmouth and Coventry City.

The Dutch defender started his career at Vitesse in 1995 and finished it in ADO ’20 in 2009 after which his professional path took an unusual turn.

Namely, this former Premier League star joined the police force in his native Netherlands where he works as an investigative detective.

De Zeuw specialised in forensics and was quoted saying that PCR was among his most loved techniques.

Bixente Lizarazu

The 47-year-old former French left-back has a sensational football career to boast with as he remains remembered as Frenc international who made his name playing for the likes of Bordeaux, Athletic Bilbao, Bayern Munich and Marseille.

The FIFA World Cup winner from 1998 ended his successful career in 2006 and went on to become highly successful in Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Now a master of this martial art, Lizarazu searched for alternative ways to remain fit albeit a renowned surfer so he decided to take up jiu-jitsu.

More than just a casual fighter as one would assume, Lizarazu is a 2009 European champion and, interestingly enough, that was his first-ever jiu-jitsu competition.

Vinnie Jones

Vincent Peter Jones did not boast a memorable football career but still remains remembered for his spells with Wimbledon, Leeds United, Sheffield United, Chelsea and Queens Park Rangers.

Having retired from football earlier than what he would have liked, Jones capitalised on a tough image he was given during his football days as he stepped into acting waters.

Jones is often typecast into tough roles of violent criminals, thugs or football hooligans. Vinnie made his film debut in the iconic Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, whereas he also appeared in blockbusters such as Snatch, Gone in 60 Seconds, X-Men: The Last Stand and most recently in the Kingsman: The Golden Circle.


Tickets please! #MidnightMeatTrain #VinnieJones #horror #bloody

A post shared by Everything Horror And Sci-Fi (@theslaughteredlamb_com) on

Barry Horne

A 55-year-old former midfielder best remembered for his Everton days ended his career in 2002.

Barry Horne is breaking the stereotype that footballers are not exactly capable of making it in an educational aspect. However, as a holder of first-class chemistry degree from the University of Liverpool, the former Wales international became a teacher of chemistry at a school in Chester.

Horne did not leave football behind as he went on to combine his skills by simultaneously managing his job in education with a director of football role at Wrexham Football Club.

Andriy Shevchenko

Former AC Milan and Chelsea striker needs no introduction as his football legacy will forever be cherished around the globe. Still, it is his political career that has been raising eyebrows since 2012.

Shevchenko has always been politically active – we remember him supporting a presidential candidate Victor Yanukovych in 2004 election – and the former striker joined Ukraine – Forward! Right after retiring from football.

He took second place on the party list for the 2012 parliamentary election in his country and claims politics is ‘the world I understand, the world I want to stay in’.


Ukraine 🇺🇦🔰

A post shared by Andriy Shevchenko (@shevchenko_07) on

Frank Leboeuf

Former French international defender Frank Leboeuf has been all over the place since his retirement.

The acting was his thing even during his football days and Chelsea fans will remember Leboeuf making his acting debut in the movie Taking Sides.

The 49-year-old transitioned from acting to appearing in stage and film productions, whereas he also acts as a sports commentator.

Several theatre plays in France aside, Leboeuf appeared in the Oscar-nominated The Theory of Everything where he played the part of the Doctor who informs a young Stephen Hawking that he is never going to walk again.

He also played a French Resistance fighter is the World War II film called Allies.

Tim Wiese

A former German goalkeeper went through the most remarkable transformation of them all.

Having adding more than just a couple of pounds of pure muscle, vastly tattooed 35-year-old is currently a professional wrestler.

Wiese’s first wrestling appearance came as a guest timekeeper at a WWE live event in Frankfurt, whereas the former goalkeeper made his WWE debut in Munich last year when he teamed up with the likes of Sheamus and Cesaro to defeat The Shining Stars and Bo Dallas.

Tim Wiese is yet to reach the highest heights of this entertainment industry, but he sure looks like he’s got plenty of potential.


💪 #hartwienie #worldofwiese

A post shared by Tim Wiese (@timwiese.official) on

Gaizka Mendieta

We’ll finish the list with some music as the final two professional footballers decided to take down the same path.

First up is Gaizka Mendieta, a former midfielder and now a master music mixer.

The Spanish footballer played for clubs which included the likes of Lazio, Valencia, Barcelona and Middlesbrough which turned out to be quite an impressive football career.

His love for football went hand in hand with his love for music and Mendieta himself admitted he used to secretly do his DJ dream after matches.

Praised for his unconventional playing style, Mendieta translated his versatility behind the mixer as well and is considered a success at his passion.

Mendieta is also working as a pundit, which keeps him close to football. 

Djibril Cisse

The French forward left a huge mark on the Premier League, playing for Liverpool, Sunderland and QPR.

Cisse won the Champions League with the Reds and by all counts had a successful football career. In February 2017, however, he decided to hang up his boots at the age of 35 in order to focus on new career as a DJ and his clothing brand ‘Mr Lenoir’.


@frey_lea future collaboration 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥 #comingsoon

A post shared by Cisse Djibril (@djibrilcisse1981) on

“I loved being a footballer, and so far the ball has been my life.”

“I would have liked to continue playing but I must admit today that football is over. With the same passion, I will devote myself wholeheartedly to my career as DJ, producer and consultant, as well as developing my clothing brand.”, Cisse said while announcing his new chapter in life.

Any favourites among these ten above?

Any interesting ones we might have missed?

Let us know.


Milos Markovic

Formerly a Chief Editor at the largest sports site in Serbia, Milos Markovic is an avid football writer who contributes to a variety of online football magazines - most prominently and His feature articles, editorials, interviews and match analyses have provided informed opinion and views, helping the football aficionados keep up to date on relevant events in world football.



Leave a Reply

Notify of
More More