Irish News

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Paul McGrath: 'The drink just owns me at times'

Published 21/07/2013|10:43

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Former Irish International Footballer Paul McGrath pictured arriving at Tullamore District Court. Photo: Press22

FORMER Ireland soccer star Paul McGrath has opened up about the crippling anxiety that pushes him into heavy drinking - following his appearance in court on public order charges last week.

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In an interview with the 'Sunday World', the 53-year-old says that "nothing else matters, even your children" when he feels the need to go on a bender.

But the former Aston Villa and Manchester United player also says that his biggest wish in life is to be sober - and he plans to return to AA meetings.

 

"I don't drink normally, even if I could just sit in my room, drink slowly and watch TV, but I don't," he tells the Sunday World.

"It's a case of filling a glass up with vodka and trying to get out of your skull as quickly as possible. I don't know what that's all about really to be honest. I haven't figured it out.

"I'd love to be able to say that I'll never drink again," he adds.

"But I honestly know that I'm going to be in a situation, maybe being asked to go to something, where I'm going to be gripped by fear

"There are very few times when I'm free of that anxiety. Even a simple thing like going to the shops,  I get a rush of anxiety."

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