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Paul Merson Opens Up On Drinking, Gambling Addiction And How Harry Redknapp Saved His Life

Arsenal great Paul Merson revealed how spending time with former England colleagues and Harry Redknapp helped him overcome his alcohol addiction.

Paul Merson

Arsenal great Paul Merson has lifted the lid on how TV series Harry's Heroes helped him climb out of the abyss of his gambling and drinking addiction. The TV show was filmed last year and Paul Merson gave plenty of credit to Harry Redknapp for changing the course of his life. By spending time with Harry Redknapp and a number of England greats during the filming of the series, Paul Merson stated he was able to overcome his vices and make redundant the thought of killing himself. 

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Paul Merson alcohol addiction

Earlier in January, Paul Merson revealed that he had remained sober for an entire year but had suicidal thoughts due to his alcohol and gambling addictions prior to filming Harry's Heroes. The 52-year-old Arsenal and England legend admitted to struggling with drinking problems for decades. At one point in his life, Merson admitted to drinking 35 pints in a week. However, while recently speaking to The Mirror, Paul Merson revealed how Harry Redknapp and former England stars cured the two-time Football League First Division champion's 'disease'.

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Harry Redknapp saves Arsenal legend, Paul Merson 

The second run of Harry's Heroes will kick off next week and Paul Merson explained how spending time with fellow England legends and Harry Redknapp turned his life around for the better. The ex-Arsenal attacker said, "I feel 100 times better and my life’s changed around." Merson gave plenty of credit to Harry Redknapp for keeping him involved with the team for most of the time and away from the drinks. "The impact of being on the team and with the boys, it saved my life," he said. 


A post shared by Paul Merson (@paulmerseofficial) on

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Paul Merson further added that after the filming he decided to go for treatment at Alcoholics Anonymous on his own. Having been advised to go for treatment on two occasions prior to that by the FA, Merson felt that he finally needed to address his alcohol issue by himself. Ever since then, it has worked wonders for the Arsenal legend who is now doing his best to remain sober and bet-free. 

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