Manchester United has one of the world’s largest fan bases – it’s truly an international club, not just a national side. The club’s dedicated supporters find themselves interested in their team’s off-pitch activities as much as their football prowess. The lives of football stars such as these are often under the spotlight and fans eagerly follow their endeavours beyond the confines of the football pitch.
The Allure of Casinos and Footballers
The lavish settings, vibrant atmosphere and the promise of luxurious experiences make casinos a magnet for high-profile individuals, including United stars. These football stars are constantly in the spotlight and so, often seek out places that offer an escape from the pressures of their demanding careers.
Casinos provide an alluring backdrop where these stars can indulge in excitement, entertainment, and a temporary departure from their footballing responsibilities. The fact that players can now enjoy visiting a casino online is an even bigger draw as they are less likely to be noticed doing so!
Footballers, by nature, are driven individuals who possess an unwavering desire for success. This competitiveness extends beyond the football pitch and manifests in various aspects of their lives, including their off-pitch activities.
Casinos, with their games of skill and chance, provide an outlet for these players to channel their competitive spirit. Casinos allow them to pursue their competitive drive off the pitch, further fuelling their interest in these establishments. Below is our list of the three United stars who love to hit the casino (past and present).
1. Wayne Rooney Loved to Visit Casinos
Rooney is one of United’s most famous footballers of all time. He joined United in 2004 and left the team in 2017 after scoring more than 250 goals for the squad. His life both on and off pitch has filled newspapers and gossip columns around the world. It’s no secret that Wayne Rooney enjoys playing casino games.
In 2020, he opened up about his love for casinos and gambling. He told of his initial wins but an overall loss and how he managed to get out before addiction took over. With so much money available to him, it’s easy to see how uncontrolled gambling could become problematic. As such, Rooney became part of the “Stay in Control” campaign that warns of the potential risks of gambling.
2. Paul Scholes Enjoyed Betting on Football
Another former United player who has a penchant for gambling is Paul Scholes. Scholes was a United midfielder who helped the team win 11 Premier League titles. After retiring from football in 2013, Scholes became a joint owner of Salford. Unlike Rooney, who loved casinos, Scholes was more of a sports bettor.
During his time in charge of Salford, he was reported to have placed around 140 football bets, which meant he broke the FA betting rules. He placed bets of more than £26,000 and profited almost £6,000. He was ultimately forced to pay £8,000 in fines for breaking rules.
3. Cristiano Ronaldo is a Great Poker Player
Cristiano Ronaldo is arguably one of United’s biggest stars. He played for the team for two separate stints. The first was between 2003 and 2009 when he made 196 appearances and scored 84 goals. The second was between 2021 and 2022 when he made 40 appearances and scored 19 goals.
What many don’t know about Ronaldo is that he’s also a keen poker player. Apparently, he began playing the game with Neymar and then, in 2015, he signed to become the face of a poker company alongside Neymar. He also played a televised poker game against Aaron Paul and, despite being the underdog, he won.
One great fact about Ronaldo is that everything he wins from playing poker, he donates to charity. Though the amount of money he has donated isn’t known, it’s likely to be a lot!
The Allure of Casinos is Big for Manchester United Players
Manchester United players have always captured worldwide attention both on and off the pitch. The allure of casinos, with their glamorous appeal, financial allure, and competitive nature, has attracted the interest of these three high-profile individuals⎯along with many others!
As we’ve seen from the few examples mentioned in this article, it is crucial to emphasise the importance of responsible gambling. Though Ronaldo has managed to do well with his poker and donate to charity, Rooney and Scholes have different stories. As such, understanding how to gamble responsibly is key.