Being Addicted was only half the story, now comes the stunning new autobiography from Tony Adams, Sober.
Tony Adams was a charismatic figure on the football field, a true leader for Arsenal and England. He won league titles in three separate decades, and after the Gunners moved to their new stadium at the Emirates, it was fitting that a statue of him was erected outside to celebrate his extraordinary career. But, for much of that time, he was also drinking heavily and eventually admitted in his book Addicted that he was an alcoholic.
Now, in that book’s stunning successor Sober, Adams reveals what happened next. He discusses the impact that Arsene Wenger had when he arrived at Arsenal in 1996, and how the manager’s new methods helped extend his career and brought new success to the club. Always a great thinker on the game, Adams moved into coaching and management on retirement, playing a key role in Portsmouth’s famous FA Cup triumph in 2008, and taking on new challenges in the Netherlands, Azerbaijan, China and now Spain to broaden his perspective.
He movingly explains the struggles he’s faced to stay sober for twenty years and why he set up Sporting Chance, the charity which provides treatment and support for sports stars suffering from addictions. He gives his incisive thoughts on England’s continued failings in major tournaments and assesses why Arsenal have struggled to repeat the title-winning formula of his own time there.
Sober is a truly inspirational memoir from someone who has battled with his demons, but has continued to take things on, one day at a time.
Tony Adams played more than 650 games for Arsenal during a twenty-year career at the club, serving as captain from 1988 to 2002, and winning four league titles during that period. He won 66 caps for England. After his playing career ended, he managed or coached at Wycombe Wanderers, Portsmouth, Gabala in Azerbaijan and worked as a vice-president of the DDMC sports management company at Chongqing Lifan in China and Granada in Spain.
"Addicted was like his football style - honest, brave, inspired and unwavering. It gave me the inspiration to deal with my own issues; here was a man openly talking about his problems and embracing life’s challenges. Reading it had a huge influence on me and I can’t wait to get stuck into Sober, I’m sure it will give many strength, myself included. Bless you Tony."