| 17.8°C Dublin

Soccer legend Gazza in
hospital after being found drunk outside his home

Former football star Paul Gascoigne has been taken to hospital after being found drunk outside his home.

Paramedics and police were called to Gazza's apartment in Sandbanks, Dorset, to find him slumped on the ground holding a bottle of gin.

The former Lazio and Tottenham Hotspur star is reportedly in the process of being evicted by his landlord from the €3.5 million property where neighbours had recently complained of the noise.

The 47-year-old former England international has for years been fighting a battle with alcoholism.

He was discovered in the streets near his rented home yesterday with a four-pack of beer and a bottle of gin.

Onlookers, worried about his condition, called emergency services and police and paramedics arrived on the scene.

During his career, the midfielder played for a range of club teams including Newcastle United, Tottenham Hotspur and Everton. It is thought the former star could face eviction from his flat in Sandbanks, and is receiving treatment at Poole Hospital.

It is understood that his landlord had given Gazza 10 days to leave the flat and that he may have been drinking for the last number of days.

"I see Gazza around - he's got a heart of gold and he's probably given his last penny away, but everyone has tried to help him and maybe the only person who can 
help him now is Gazza himself," said current QPR manager and friend Harry Redknapp.

The player has been fighting with addiction for over a decade and has been in and out of rehab since 2008. In 2007, he had emergency surgery on a stomach ulcer and the following year he was sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

It was reported that he was near death last year before a number of his friends and former teammates, including Gary Lineker and DJ Chris Evans, paid for emergency rehab treatment in the US.

Gazza had recently showed signs that he was finally getting the better of his demons and had even joined up with a Sunday league team.

However, the relapse has worried his close friends who have begun to question if he can ever recover from his alcoholism.