From dressing room to the real world

By Cameron Bunch

Minimising the Whiplash of a 180 Degree career change

In the ever-changing world of sport, it can sometimes be difficult to look past the façade of nimble footwork and shooting acrobatics, and understand the problems faced by one of these surprisingly ordinary individuals. Beyond the physical demands of a match, season or career, the mental repercussions of fierce competition and copious amounts of pressure is often overlooked, with players finding themselves under constant scrutiny in keeping training high and match performance even higher.

For footballers In particular, the peak of their careers can often appear lavish and luxurious, with a healthy flow of funds to carry them through retirement. It is estimated up to 2 in 5 former players will be experiencing serious financial difficulties within 5 years of leaving football, but in a sport with some of the highest paid athletes in the world, how does this happen?

According to the PFA, there is a recent rise in the number of footballers looking for help with mental health issues, with 160 current and former football players asking for support in 2016. These players could range from a League-two midfielder to the likes of a Premier League winger – with the recent case of Aaron Lennon receiving treatment for a stress-related illness. No matter the size of the club or the charming appearances and personalities of these stars, the problems underneath faced by these players affect them just as severely as the rest of us.

In the case of most players, financial planning is not considered for the long-term career, having their lifetime commitment to the beautiful game rewarded with little to no support or advice. Whilst for some riding on the high of their success with large spending reduces the strength of their retirement funds, failing investments coming from poor financial advice is the most significant for sportsmen and women. It is known with any honey pot there will be fly’s circling around, and in the case of high-level football, financial advisers have capitalized on the young player’s lack of investment experience and unfairly invested in substandard ventures.

A sporting career is unique in its dependence on physical health as well as mental, where injury and natural age majorly affects income potential and consistency. During periods where a sportsperson cannot perform on the field, bouts of depression and anxiety can build up, until the point where leading a life devoid of their usual sporting lifestyle might seem unbearable. Not only this, but younger players who find themselves pushed away from their clubs early in their career deal with a similar issue – entering the normal working world with little skills and qualifications.

Distancing from the world of football can lead to far larger financial issues in the long term, with the possibilities of divorce hugely affecting both mental health and monetary stability. The transition between these careers can made be far easier if the right precautions are made for both the wellbeing of the individual and their financial future

Cadence Wealth have partnered up with The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) an award-winning charity dedicated to preventing male suicide in the UK. We are proud to support CALM and are committed to trying to increase the exposure that men’s mental health deserves, both inside the world of football and in our everyday lives.

 CALM works to prevent male suicide by providing frontline services for men, promoting culture change and campaigning for better understanding of suicide and prevention.


CALM offers:

  • A free helpline 0800 585858 and webchat (5pm – midnight daily), which are accredited, anonymous and staffed by trained professionals
  • is CALM’s website, hosting inspiring content written by men for men alongside information and support
  • The CALMzone, a free quarterly men’s lifestyle magazine to entertain, inform and inspire young men
  • Successful campaigns tackling stereotypes of masculinity and mental health, including #BiggerIssues and #ManDictionary
  • Bereavement support through the Support After Suicide Partnership, hosted by CALM


For more information on CALM or for any further help or advice, please visit


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