Football’s Suicide Secret

Published on 1st February 2016 by

A 2013 BBC 3 documentary by former professional footballer and chairman of the PFA Clark Carlisle which tackles the issue of mental illness in the beautiful game, with Carlisle talking extensively about his own issues with depression and talking to other former pros about their own battles with the illness.

Also featuring in the film is the former Crystal Palace and Norwich striker Leon McKenzie, who attempted suicide during a difficult spell at Charlton Athletic before going on to turn his life around by taking up professional boxing.

Also featured are relatives of Gary Speed, the popular former footballer and manager whose suicide in 2011 shocked the football world, events which led to numerous other players deciding to go public with their own battles. Clarke Carlisle would go on to attempt suicide himself in 2014 by jumping in front of a moving lorry on a motorway, he survived the attempt.


In 2014, not long before his suicide attempt, Clark Carlisle had published a autobiographical book about his life and career You Don’t Know Me But…. A Footballer’s Life, in which he wrote extensively about his battles with alcohol and depression, it was published by Simon & Schuster and is available in paperback, hardcover, and kindle editions.

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