Going out drinking and smoking
Western Sydney Wanderers coach Markus Babbel’s arrival at Liverpool is one story. His departure is another all together.
While at The Reds, Babbel came down with a condition that affected his nervous system. In the aftermath, he changed his approach to life.
“It was a problem for Liverpool. They saw me, a top professional who had played 60 games from 63 games, going out drinking and smoking. … for me it was clear: if I want to come back to 100 per cent professional football, then I have to leave the country.”
Also on the list is the GWS Giants’ latest excellent example of bringing fans close to the emotion of a player learning their debut is imminent.
There are stories of flying NBA players at Uninterrupted and an Olympic skier who lifts the lid on one of the less glamorous aspects of her nomadic lifestyle.
These are our favourite stories this week about elite sportspeople, as told by elite sportspeople, from our favourite athlete platforms around the world.
Just like you get on PlayersVoice everyday.
Markus Babbel’s four-year stint at Liverpool had it all. The big German defender said England was the only place he’d play outside his home country and it turned out to be the experience of a lifetime.
In this insightful piece for The Coaches’ Voice, the Western Sydney Wanderers mentor reveals the machinations of his chat with Gerard Houllier, which led to his signing with The Reds. Babbel was thrilled, only to discover that English football wasn’t all he’d thought it was.
“The biggest problem in English football at that time was this: they were not 100 percent professional,” he writes. “On the pitch, they gave everything. Outside the pitch, they loved a drink as well.”
Read the full piece here.
⚡️ “Playing at a club like Bayern Munich teaches you a mindset: you have to win.
"You’re 10 or 11 years old, you finish second and the youth co-ordinator is telling you that it’s not good enough."https://t.co/vrM9xy3rcS
— The Coaches’ Voice (@CoachesVoice) February 19, 2021
There’s your first day of school. Getting your driver’s licence. Perhaps your first kiss. For an elite athlete, add in the day you learned you were making your debut to the list of major milestones in life.
The Tait Mackrill debut announcement had all the elements. It was brilliantly staged and Mackrill’s reaction was precious. But, what really topped off the viral post was the phone call she was shown making to her parents, who come across as salt-of-the-earth country folks.
Mum’s tears are like a yawn – totally contagious.
People told Tait Mackrill she'd never make it. Tait continued to chase her AFLW dream.
— GWS GIANTS (@GWSGIANTS) February 14, 2021
You’re bathing in it
Ah, the glamour. Surely it doesn’t get better than travelling the world, staying in great hotels, competing at the most beautiful venues – and doing your laundry in the bathtub.
Mikaela Shiffrin is a multiple World and Olympic champion skier. But, in this video at Uninterrupted, she shows that there are few shortcuts for elite athletes when it comes to menial chores.
How do you do laundry while on the road for six months straight? ?
— UNINTERRUPTED (@uninterrupted) February 20, 2021
That’s a free!
Before Diallo dunked over Shaq, @nate_robinson took flight over Dwight.
— UNINTERRUPTED (@uninterrupted) February 18, 2021
Having a superstar for a father can be a blessing or a curse. In Romelu Lukaku’s case, it’s the former.
“… having your dad as a pro … sometimes he can be too hard on you, or else he can find the right balances to give you the right positive coaching to make sure you get there. That’s what I had.”
With @RomeluLukaku9 overcoming the pressures of following in his father’s footsteps, he had some wise words for the game’s younger generation. Watch the full episode, only on https://t.co/NmeiKUWafP #OurOtherClub pic.twitter.com/3QAknA3RRJ
— OTRO (@OTRO) February 18, 2021
It’s better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all. Not really a sporting quote, but it’s analogous to the view Matt Srama has of his forced retirement from rugby league.
The former Gold Coast hooker had just marked his 26th birthday when he announced that an ACL tear – on top of previous hip, shoulder, ankle and groin injuries – meant the end of his six-year stint in the NRL.
He also discusses the challenges he faced transitioning out of the game and how in his new role, with the Titans Elite Development System, he encourages young players to appreciate their opportunity.
“No one really cares who you are once footy’s finished.”@matty_srama shares how mindfulness gave him hope after a serious knee injury cut the former @GCTitans hooker's career short.#exclusiveinsighthttps://t.co/txeMdxdUT5 pic.twitter.com/QlnMrvgVXc
— exclusive insight (@exinsight) February 19, 2021
Jason Gillespie’s father was helping his son move house in England. Suddenly, he was gone.
When Jason found him, he was collapsed in the gutter, having a heart attack.