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Windass: I tried to commit suicide

Dean Windass attempted suicide at the beginning of January following a battle with alcohol and depression.

The 42-year-old former Hull, Bradford, Middlesbrough and Aberdeen striker retired from playing two years ago and says he has struggled to cope since.

"I have cried every day for two years," he told The People. "I took an overdose and, when that didn't work, I tried to hang myself."

Windass earned in excess of £500,000 a year at his peak, but says most of his money has gone. After his 18-year marriage ended and the recent death of his father, he found his situation too difficult to cope with.

He says he is speaking out to try to help people who are experiencing similar feelings of depression.

"People outside football think we have it all. But I was in a hole that I honestly didn't know how to get out of. Just over a week ago, I hit rock bottom and decided to end it all.

"I need to sort myself out which is why I'm speaking out now. It's part of me getting better - part of the healing process.

'I wanted to end it all'

"People have this image of me as this big strong man who can take anything life throws at him. But I'm not ashamed to say I wanted to end it after a string of setbacks.

"I knew I'd been a fool but I couldn't shake off the depression at feeling what a failure I'd become."

His first attempt to commit suicide, an overdoes of tablets, was interrupted by an ex girlfriend who visited him to see how he was. The next day he tried again, attempting to hang himself with a bedsheet.

"I tied it to a handrail at the top of the stairs but it was too long. I was quite drunk and couldn't get it to work, so I got a belt instead. At that point a friend came round so I couldn't go through with it.

"We're not the brightest but you play football all your life. There are hundreds of footballers in the same boat. There is nothing to get up for in the morning."

Windass says he thinks more should be done to help current and former players.

"The Professional Footballers' Association or the governing body need to help us. I have hurt the people closest to me, so I've come out today and admitted I need help."

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