Steven Caulker has played under some of the best managers in the game.
Jurgen Klopp, Roy Hodgson and Brendan Rodgers to name but a few.
He’s also played at some of the biggest clubs around, included Spurs, Liverpool and the England National Team.
As a talented young footballer, having graduated from the Spurs Academy he seemed to have the world at his feet.
But behind the scenes Steven was battling with his own inner demons. Every single day.
In 2016, after struggling with crippling addiction from his teens, he hit what he describes as his rock bottom. A time where he says he’d “fallen away from football, fallen away from life”.
Brendan Rodgers – who managed Steven for a season at Swansea in 2011/12 – was one of the first to identify his issues – and Steven elaborates on that time, the empathy shown, and on the “amazing” coach and manager that Rodgers was for him.
Had things gone differently he could also have pulled on a Celtic shirt under Rodgers, but for reasons off the pitch it wasn’t to be.
But aside from that link to Rodgers. This episode isn’t about Celtic.
This is about a side of football we don’t tend to see. A side far away from the cameras, from the fame and from the glory.
And now, at the age of 31, and all too familiar with the destruction and darkness that can result from addiction, Steven is aiming to make a difference with the launch of his ‘Behind The White Lines’ Academy.
An academy that supports young footballers facing challenges similar to his own, and one which helps them to plot the arduous journey through academy football and beyond, thanks in large to Steven’s own personal experiences.
This is different from most other episodes we do here at The Celtic Exchange but is potentially the most important one we’ve recorded.
If the interview with Steven resonates with you then please share with anyone you think will benefit from it, and don’t hesitate to get in touch directly on email@example.com with any feedback.
For anyone struggling with addiction or with any of the themes discussed then we’ve linked to some valuable resources below as well as to Steven’s Academy at Behind The White Lines.
RESOURCES AND LINKS FROM THIS EPISODE
- Behind The White Lines: LinkedIn | Twitter | Instagram | Youtube
- Gambling Support Services: Gamble Aware
- Alcohol Support Services: Drink Aware
- Anxiety & Depression Support (UK): Mind
- Anxiety & Depression Support (Scotland): Breathing Space Scotland
Listen now at The Celtic Exchange Plus.
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