Niall McNamee's gambling problems are well documented at this stage. The Offaly footballer actually wrote several searingly honest blogs about his addiction.
In an excellent interview with Malachy Clerkin in the Irish Times, he opened up about the moment he realised that people knew about his problem. During a Leinster Club Championship game, as he was about to take a penalty, an opposition player asked "What price are you for first goal?". He would miss the penalty though score the rebound.
This really hurt me. I don’t think I’ve ever said this to anyone before. Nobody knew about my gambling at the time as far as I was concerned. I was in a bad way but I was keeping it secret I thought. We had a penalty about 10 minutes into the game and as I was lining it up, one of their lads walked past me and said, ‘What price are you for first goal?’ That really hurt me. I carried that for months afterwards. For years, actually. My mind was going mad. How the fuck did he know? Who’s talking about me? What’s going on?
McNamee started at centre forward for Offaly as they crashed out to Longford in the first round of the Leinster Championship on Saturday.
Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE