Every footballer dreams of making an impact at the club that they’re plying their trade for and make a mark. Footballers want to be remembered by the fans and peers alike for scoring winning goals in finals, putting their bodies on the line to secure a result and giving it their all to ensure that the club remains successful.
Footballers are after all, human beings. The cheers from the crowd pump them up, the boos likewise affect their morale. They don’t want to be the ones held responsible for poor results; the heartbreak on their faces when a mistake is made visible for all to see.
Thus, there are those like Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, John Terry, Thierry Henry, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes and few other players who will forever be remembered as legends at their clubs for all they gave to it, both on the pitch and off it. Their legacy will leave a lasting impact for generations to come, inspiring younger players to join the academy ranks and the more ‘established’ ones to push the club to further glories.
However there are also those who ruined their reputation and legacy through various means – be it drug abuse, joining rival clubs or a host of other reasons.
Here is our list of 5 footballers who effectively ruined all that they’d worked to achieve, courtesy of some poor decision making.
#5 Cesc Fabregas
Cesc Fabregas was one of the most talented individuals to ever graduate from Arsenal’s academy and made his first-team debut at the age of just 16 after Wenger acquired him from Barcelona.
Wenger had so much faith in the Spanish midfielder’s abilities that he shipped club legend, Patrick Viera off to Juventus to make space for him in the team. Unfortunately for the Spaniard, he became a mainstay in the team after the Invincibles’ season, and at a time when the club were struggling to pay off debts for their new Emirates stadium.
He thus ended up winning only an FA Cup with the Gunners and watched as the quality of the squad deteriorated and they simply managed to just qualify for the Champions League each season.
A part of the team that lost the Champions League final to Barcelona in 2006, he eventually began to agitate towards a move to Barcelona – the club where he’d had his initial footballing education – and the Gunners faithful were angered when he tried to force through a move.
He eventually got his wish in 2011 and though he won the La Liga, the Copa Del Ray and a few other titles with the Catalans, expectations were much higher of him, with fans booing him during matches on quite a few occasions.
He sealed his fate as a ‘traitor’ amongst Gunners fans when he then ended up moving to bitter London-rivals, Chelsea; made worse by the fact he joined them under Jose Mourinho’s tenure, a man the Arsenal faithful hated with a passion.