Former Real Madrid and Netherlands midfielder Wesley Sneijder has admitted that, despite enjoying success in the Spanish capital before moving to Inter Milan, life at Los Blancos got out of hand due to the fame he enjoyed.
In his two seasons at the European giants, he won a LaLiga title and a Spanish Super Cup, but Sneijder has now revealed that the temptations of living the high life contributed to a downturn in his fitness, his marriage, and his form at the Santiago Bernabeu.
"I was not aware that moving to Real also meant I moved into the nightlife of Madrid," the 36-year-old said in his autobiography, which is set be released this week, according to Marca.
"I was young and I liked success and to be the centre of attention. But bad things happened there. It wasn't drugs, but alcohol... I got used to living like a star.
"You're adored as a Real Madrid player and going out on the street spending thousands of euros and paying for things for people. I can't say that I was deprived of anything.
"I could only be alone... and I didn't realise that the bottle of vodka had become my best friend. Physically, I didn't realise. I would get up the next day as if nothing had happened.
"I kept training but getting worse each time and clearly less focused. I lied to myself, saying that everything was going fine and took refuge in my footballing intelligence.
"I sank physically. I ran less, I hid from my coach more. I also thought that nobody would notice."
Do you think that players should enjoy themselves the way Sneijder did, or should they stay focused and disciplined as professionals? Let us know in the comments section below.