Life after football can be devastating if you let it be as a retired footballer. It is a common cause that local footballers and internationally believe that legends of the game lose their hard-earned money within a few years of their retirement.

Such situations befall many for various reasons, including lack of financial education and necessary luxury purchases and lifestyle.

Sometimes, these superstars make suitable investments, thus planning correctly for life after football. Alfred Ndyenge, Collin Benjamin, Ronnie Fillemon Kanalelo, Ronald Ketjijere, Bimbo Tjihero, Eliphas Shivute, Sandro de Gouveia, Albert Tjihero, just to mention a few, planned very well for their life after football that shows courage and bravery.

Players at the peak of their careers are taken through a whirlwind of fame, and very few of them can handle it. Imagine playing for clubs like Kaizer Chiefs, African Stars, Hamburger SV, Blackburn Rovers. One may become comfortable and temporarily forget life after all the pomp, fame, and funfair.  You can get swept away with all the supporters, the winning of trophies, the weekly wages, the luxury hotels, global traveling that come with it to the extent that you forget your reality.

The issue of players struggling has been witnessed locally and is not unique to the international stage. After football, the key to a successful life is education, hiring the right financial advisor, and having the right agent during your career. As you know, life begins at 40. But by that time, you have retired, and you must make a living from the wealth you created in football.  Football players must understand that playing football is a short career that ends at 35 if you have taken care of yourself and the value of planning for life after football starts on day one of signing that big contract. Start thinking about your future and be brave enough to create a happy life in and after football.

Clubs, associations, Leagues, and Agents must invest and do more in preparing footballers for life after football as the industry has a lot of opportunities for retired players.

You can become a coach, run an academy, become an agent yourself, the list is endless, even start a high-performance training school to mentor 21-century athletes.

Players should use opportunities presented to them and partner with local brands like Tafel Lager to educate and start crucial conversations like these to ensure that we break the cycle of financial ruin for our beloved players, turned legends. This critical thinking takes innovation and bravery to make it happen, and it just takes one… Just one!

It is painful to see a former legend living a life that does not match their contribution to the beautiful game after celebrating their talent.

We must stop this and celebrate them, give them their flowers while they are alive and let them live in comfort long after the final 90 minutes is up, and the last whistle blows.

Let’s #BeBrave and start the conversation and prepare our current players for a great life after hanging their boots. That’s how we change the world.

It is your blogger Olsen Kahiriri. Until next time enjoy your festive season with the compliment of Tafel Lager, your brand in football. #NamibianLikeYou #ResponsilbeLikeYou #HappyHolidays #FinestLager