Drinking himself to death is Gazza”’’s greatest fear

February 27th, 2009 - 2:26 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Feb.27 (ANI): Former England football star Paul Gascoigne has one great fear drinking himself to death like his hero George Best. According to The Sun, Gazza poured out his anguish at the same health farm where tragic Bestie fought his last vain battle with the bottle. Man United legend Best looked a haggard, broken man as he nursed a glass of white wine months before his death at 59 in November 2005. But smiling, sun tanned Gazza was drinking bottled water at the same spot yesterday and looked sober and fighting fit after a three-hour gym workout.
The ex-Spurs and Newcastle star has been in rehab at soccer pal Tony Adamss Sporting Chance Clinic in the grounds of the Champneys health spa at Forest Mere, Hants.
Doomed Best spent months at the same spa as he struggled to contain his drink problem and even has a suite there named after him.
Gazza said: Im humbled when people say Im the George Best of my generation.
He was a great guy and a great player and I wished to God Id had his looks. But what happened to him will always be a lesson to me. I knew George and really felt for him in the end for obvious reasons our experiences in life had been so similar, he added.
He was a great man, but was never left alone to recover from his problems. I just hope I am left alone to get on with my recovery. I cried when he died. I called his son Calum and spoke to him when he was at his dads bedside in hospital. It was a very emotional time, Gazza said. Like Gazzas, Bests life was a catalogue of drunken episodes, booze-fuelled arrests and domestic bust-ups.
And like Gazza he gave up alcohol many times before relapsing into his old, self-destructive ways.
Gazza said: Im an alcoholic like George and I know that in some ways my behaviour has been even more self-destructive than his. George never took cocaine. I have admitted that and my problems got so bad that I ended up in a mental hospital. But now Im sober I know that alcoholism affects people in different ways and that if I ever drink again, it will be no ones fault but my own.
Gazza said he is now forced to structure his day around times when he is most at risk of reaching for the bottle.
Therapy, meetings and simple tasks are organised to coincide with his daily moments of weakness, which start at 11am incredibly the time he used to start drinking.
The soccer hero admitted there had been many tears and tantrums as he clawed his way back to health.
His plunge into the abyss was so deep that in September last year rumours spread that he had been found dead in a North East hotel room.
The story had to be quashed by Northumbria Police.
I can never say never, I know I might drink again. But I have to hope that I will have the strength to stop before it destroys me. (ANI)

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