Tuesday, 28 May 2024

What Footballers Do After Retirement

The professional life of a footballer is relatively short, with many retiring by the age of 36. So, what do these players do after they hang up their boots? Let’s explore some of the common paths that footballers take after retirement.

Football Management

Football management and coaching are natural career choices for former footballers. Many players start training to be coaches or managers while still playing, thanks to clubs emphasizing the importance of equipping players with skills for life after retirement. They go through the coaching pathway provided by the Football Association and then find roles at clubs as coaches or managers.

It may seem logical that players who have played at a higher level would make better coaches or managers. While this can be the case, it’s not a guarantee for success. Some of the most successful football managers, like Jose Mourinho, did not play professional football at a high level. The skills required for playing and managing football are different, and some players excel more in coaching than they did on the field.

In some cases, former players even venture into football club ownership. For instance, a group of former Manchester United players purchased Salford City, a semi-pro Northern Premier League side, in 2014.

The Media

The media has become a favored destination for many ex-footballers. Some go into the media as commentators, summarizers, or presenters if they fail to make it in football management. Others see a career in the media as their primary goal from the start.

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TV demands personalities and recognizable faces, making it a career path that mostly attracts players who have reached the highest level of the game. However, you can also find former players who have played at lower levels working on regional sports programs or writing football columns for local newspapers.

Business Ventures

While coaching and media work are popular choices, some footballers prefer more traditional ways of earning a living. Before the era of huge paydays in football, many players had to find alternative careers. Even today, with higher earnings, some players choose to work in various businesses.

For example, Tom Finney, one of the greatest players of all time, became a plumber after retiring. Stuart Ripley, a former Premier League winner, is now a successful solicitor and lecturer. There are also players like Jeff Whitley, who became a used car salesman, and Arjan De Zeeuw, now working as a police officer in the Netherlands.

Players who have only played in lower leagues often need to retrain and find new careers after retiring from football. You can find former professional footballers working in a range of jobs, from bakers and postmen to accountants, fitness trainers, and salesmen.


Q: What percentage of footballers become coaches or managers?
A: While many footballers pursue coaching or management careers, it is not the path chosen by all. Some players prefer to explore other opportunities in the media or business sectors.

Q: Are there any footballers who have started their own businesses?
A: Yes, some footballers have ventured into entrepreneurship, starting their own businesses or investing in various industries. It provides them with an avenue to continue working and apply their skills in new ways.

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Q: Do all footballers have to find new careers after retirement?
A: Not all footballers need to find new careers after retirement. Players who have earned significant wealth during their playing careers may choose to retire and focus on personal endeavors or enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle.


Retirement from professional football doesn’t mean the end for players. Many go on to contribute to the sport as coaches or managers, while others find success in the media or business world. Regardless of their path, former footballers continue to make an impact in various industries, leveraging the skills and experiences gained from their playing days.

For more information and updates on the world of football, visit Auralpressure, your go-to source for all things football.