Remembered for Football Career or Reality TV?

When Kieron Dyer entered the Australian outback in November 2015 as part of the hugely popular UK television show I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, the footballing world collectively let out a huge sigh.

To be fair to Dyer he donated his entire fee to charity but are we fed up of seeing our footballing heroes on various television shows ballroom dancing, ice skating or living in a jungle?

Why can’t these ex footballers retire gracefully and open a pub or tour the after dinner circuit like the footballers of yesteryear frequently did?

The way football is today every player is under intense media scrutiny from the very start of their playing career so it’s no wonder that when they’re retired they crave the spotlight once again.

In this latest post we take a look at the ex footballers who have entered a reality television show since hanging up their boots.

Strictly Come Dancing

Robbie Savage 

Aside from being an ambassador for football betting at William Hill in 2010 the former footballer that everyone loves to hate Savage did very well in the 2011 series of the dancing show and lasted nine weeks before he was eliminated.

One of the main talking points of his appearance on the show was when he slid on his knees towards the camera as part of his routine hitting it face first and breaking his nose.

He later tweeted: “20 years as a footballer – 1 broken leg, 1 broken neck, 7 knee ops, 3 hernias. As a dancer – 5 weeks, a broken nose!


Peter Schmeichel

Legendary Manchester United goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel took to the dance floor in 2006 and did well by lasting until the seventh week before elimination.

Considering his large frame Schmeichel was surprisingly light on his feet, especially in the ballroom discipline, and achieved 31 points out of 40 for his Tango including a 9 from head judge Len Goodman.


John Barnes

Former Liverpool and England winger John Barnes showed off his nimble footwork a year after Peter Schmeichel’s appearance and did one better by lasting until the eighth week before elimination.

Like Schmeichel, Barnes’ size wasn’t a hindrance and he showed off a lot of natural rhythm which ultimately led to him being awarded the first 10 of the series for his Salsa dance.

Celebrity Big Brother

Neil Ruddock

When it was revealed that former West Ham United and Liverpool hard man Neil ‘Razor’ Ruddock was set to enter the Celebrity Big Brother house you just knew that there were going to be fireworks.

Ruddock didn’t disappoint and was slapped with a warning by the show’s bosses for threatening behaviour to American house mates Spencer and Heidi Pratt after they called former X Factor star Rylan Clark a fake.

That incident aside, Ruddock surprised many with his gentle giant demeanour, and he went all the way to the final before getting voted out in fifth place.


Vinnie Jones

Reportedly paid £350,00 for taking part in the show, Vinnie Jones was popular with the other house mates but not so popular with the public who, after cheering him when he entered the house, booed him when he left.

After a quiet start where he was mostly cooking, cleaning and chilling out, his alpha male side eventually came to the fore when he had an argument with R&B singer Sisqo about who was the boss of the kitchen and threatened show bosses with legal action against him.

Jones did however make it to the last week and ended up finishing the show in third place.

I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here!

Jimmy Bullard

Cheeky chappy Bullard entered the Australian outback in November 2014 and was an instant favourite with the viewers with his entertaining antics and showmanship.

He was the early favourite to win the show but suffered a huge fall from grace with the viewers when he was accused of bullying fellow camp mate Jake Quickenden by mocking his celebrity credentials.

Bullard paid the price of his ‘banter’ and became the first celebrity to be voted off the show.


John Fashanu

Former Wimbledon striker and Gladiators host John Fashanu featured in the second series in 2003 and was an instant hit with viewers when he successfully conquered his fear of heights in a couple of the Bushtucker Trials.

Fashanu got a lot of screen time on the show participating in four of the first seven trials getting maximum stars and meals for everyone in camp in three of them.

He finished the show in second place behind former cricketer Phil Tufnell.

Dancing on Ice

David Seaman

Former Arsenal and England goalkeeper David Seaman appeared on the first series of ITV’s Dancing on Ice in 2006.

Similar to Peter Schmeichel in Strictly Come Dancing, Seaman was graceful in his movement despite his large frame and finished the competition in a respectable fourth place.

Seaman first met his current wife Frankie who was one of the professional skaters through his involvement with the show.

Graeme Le Saux

Graeme Le Saux took part in series 4 of the popular ITV show but found the challenges of skating on ice extremely difficult.

Le Saux’s time on the show was short lived and after taking a nasty tumble in training, suffering a bad facial injury before the show had even started he was voted off in the first show.

For more information on ex Premier League footballers check out The Premier League Heroes website.