Former Arsenal and Tottenham midfielder David Bentley has admitted he retired from football as he ‘never felt like a footballer’, reports the Daily Mirror.
The former England international retired this summer at the age of just 29.
Bentley said: “To be honest, I was even having a few doubts about football when I was at Blackburn.
“It was weird. Kim was like: ‘You’ve got to buck your ideas up’. A lot of people were saying that and I remember walking my dog, thinking: ‘This ain’t for me’.
“I remember being a bit disappointed in myself. I was thinking: ‘You should love it, what’s the matter with you? You’re only saying this because you’re a little bit unhappy at the minute’.
“But in the end I just got tired of all the bull**** that goes with it, people wanting you to sell yourself as something you’re not.
“I loved matchdays, the atmosphere and the buzz, but, looking back, the biggest disappointment was coming out of youth team football.
“Back then I was with my mates, playing Sunday League, you’re winning together with all your mums and dads, that’s when football is brilliant.
“For me the professional dressing-room wasn’t that exciting, life wasn’t that great. Whether my career reached the heights it could or should have done – certain people are built for the life of a footballer but I don’t think I was.
“I had the tools but I don’t think I had that. But that’s what makes me who I am and I never wanted to change it.
“Everyone grows up dreaming of being a Premier League footballer, playing for England – and I did it.
“But it wasn’t like whoopee-do and then, bang, finished. The contract ran down, it stopped and I stopped playing. I didn’t give up while I had a contract, I just decided that my future was outside of football.”