Over 130 ex-footballers currently behind bars in UK

Last Updated: Mar 25, 2013, 18:09 PM IST

London: A charity has called for football administrators to help about 133 former players, including former Everton star Michael Branch, who are currently behind bars.

Xpro chief executive Geoff Scott believes football administrators should spend some of their vast TV revenue to help tackle it. Xpro, set up in 2010, helps those who have fallen on hard times after retirement or failed to make the grade as a youngster.

The charity has made nearly 100 prison visits to help stars such as Branch and ex-Stoke City academy player Andrew Hall and former Millwall star Gavin Grant, both jailed for murder.

Scott claimed he was inspired to help the ex-players, after a visit to his former club Stoke, later going on to quit his career in telecoms and set up Xpro. Scott said he just wanted to help some of his mates who were in trouble, adding they understand what these problems are like because, they are ex-players.

Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the Professional Footballers Association, said they are aware that footballers have trouble adjusting when they come out of the game and they go off track, adding they are working with various bodies to help such players.