JESSE LINGARD has opened up on his battle with depression at Manchester United and revealed he used to drink to take away the pain.
The fun-loving 29-year-old usually lights up a room with his smile or his light-hearted nature.
How big a pay cheque is, or what car they drive, what watch or clothes they wear is often used to dismiss the simple fact that footballer’s are human too.
Speaking in The Jesse Lingard Story, which airs on Tuesday on Channel 4, the now Nottingham Forest ace said: “I just felt so much scrutiny, especially after the Derby game and I was getting abuse as I got on the bus.
“I can normally take it but sometimes it gets to a point where it’s like: ‘Ahh, I can’t even be arsed doing this any more.’
“Nobody really knew about my struggles off the pitch so they think: ‘You’re a footballer, you live in a nice house, you’ve got money, you can deal with anything.’
“But when it’s someone’s health and well being – it’s a different situation. We’re all human.
“It was difficult around that moment in time. It was probably [for] months.
“I didn’t want to play in case I did badly and there was more scrutiny. Football is my happy place but at that time, I couldn’t really put myself in that situation.
“I was playing and I felt like I was non-existent. The games were just passing me by.
“When it’s not working out on the pitch, you try to work that bit harder to do well in the next match but my mind wasn’t there to do that.
“I wanted to stop completely and have a break and just be at home. I didn’t want to be on the pitch and have all that scrutiny. You lose a ball and it’s more pressure.”
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