Former Arsenal star Emmanuel Eboue has revealed how he lost millions of pounds of his earnings and gone from a rich football star to a poor man on the brink of suicide.
Ivorian defender Eboue 34, narrated to the Mirror his heartbreaking story of financial, mostly pointing the finger at his estranged wife Aurelie and his own naivety.Eboue told the British tabloid that he lost all his money to Aurelie, who he claimed also handled his finances, in their divorce settlement and has been ordered to also give up his house in London to the ex-wife.
It is now three weeks since a deadline passed for Eboue to surrender ownership of the North London home he used to share with Aurelie and the fallen star could be forcibly ejected.
Eboue and his wife lived there before Eboue bought a mansion – which Aurelie has now put on the market.
So Eboue now awaits the knock that will see him ordered to leave at any time.
“I can’t afford the money to continue to have any lawyer or barrister,” Eboue told the Mirror.
“I am in the house but I am scared. Because I don’t know what time the police will come.
“Sometimes I shut off the lights because I don’t want people to know that I am inside. I put everything behind the door.
“My own house. I suffered to buy my house but I am now scared.
“I am not going to sell my clothes or sell what I have. I will fight until the end because it is not fair.”
Eboue made millions of pounds at Arsenal and then more than £1.5million a year at Turkish side Galatasaray but admits he was never given guidance to manage his finances.
“I look back and say ‘Emmanuel, you have been naive… why didn’t you think about that before?’ It is hard,” he added.
“Very, very hard. The money I earned, I sent it to my wife for our children.
“In Turkey I earned eight million euros. I sent seven million back home. Whatever she tells me to sign, I sign.
“She is my wife. The problems with FIFA (when he was banned for a pay dispute with an agent) were because of people advising me. People who are supposed to care. But it was because of them FIFA banned me.”
Eboue surrendered his expensive cars among assets to his wife, and now relies on London public transport.
The Mirror repprts that Eboue splits his time between the Enfield house and the home of a confidante he calls his “sister” – Yasmin Razak.
He often sleeps on a mattress on her living room floor.
But even watching TV – and seeing the likes of former team-mate Thierry Henry as a football pundit – triggers negative thoughts.
He adds: “When I see Thierry I feel happy for him but ashamed of my own situation.
“When I see friends on TV that I played with or against I say to myself ‘I should still be there’. It’s hard to watch them.”