David Ginola tried to win lottery during footie days to not 'be a slave to work'

I’m A Celebrity’s David Ginola tried to win the lottery when he was a Premier League footballer – because he worries about cash so much.

The former Newcastle United player, 54, is likely to pick up a six-figure sum for taking part in the latest series of the ITV show which kicks off at the weekend.

And despite earning a five-figure weekly wage while playing for the Magpies in the mid-90s, Ginola was desperate to win millions to ensure he no longer had to be “a slave to work”.

He said: “I don’t play the lottery now, but I used to when I was playing for Newcastle. It was because our housekeeper did it every week and she used to get me to join in with her and give her numbers.

“I used to joke with her that we would win the jackpot and run away together.

“If I did win the jackpot, say £10 million, I would invest it all in a bank that would give me the best interest.

“I would play out the rest of my football career and then take a year off with my family and choose what to do with my life.

“Money for me means having a choice of what to do, not being a slave to work. It’s as simple as that.”


David played the lottery during his football days
(
Birmingham Post and Mail)

David Ginola


He always believed in ‘maximising’ his celebrity status
(
Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)

Ginola – who will make his I’m A Celebrity debut on Sunday’s launch episode alongside the likes of former Strictly judge Dame Arlene Phillips, and Emmerdale star Danny Miller – has always believed in “maximising” his celebrity status to its “full potential”.

In his autobiography, Le Magnifique, he wrote: “I have to admit that I worry about money like everyone else. “I am not the kind of person who, if, for example, owned a profitable company which made a lot of money, would hunger after more.

“I would sell it, and with the money enjoy myself, making my friends and family happy. While I am in demand as a celebrity I believe in maximising the situation to its full potential, because you never know what is around the corner.

“I would like enough money to make my family secure. Money doesn’t bring happiness, but it can help you to realise some of your dreams.

“Money enables you to achieve your dreams in life and I never stop thinking how lucky I was to be born with this talent [football].”

But Ginola will not be looking forward to any water-based Trials on I’m A Celebrity, as the former Aston Villa footballer has a fear of sharks, which stems from watching 1975 film Jaws when he was underage.

He wrote in the book: “At some point in my life I am determined to confront the one phobia I have. It frustrates me because I love water, I love swimming, and I love the underwater world – but I am obsessed by one thing. Sharks.

David Ginola


He no longer plays
(
Serena Taylor)

David Ginola


The star is now taking part in I’m A Celeb
(
Press Association)

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“I wake up in the night sometimes, sweating, after dreaming I’m being eaten by a shark.

“It all stems from when I was 12 and I went to see the film Les Dents de la Mer, or Jaws. I wasn’t allowed to go, but I crept out of the house without my parents’ permission and went to the cinema with some friends.

“It was just before the summer and the film really had a deep effect on my mind. Now fear of sharks has become a phobia that I cannot shift.

“Every time I went to the beach after that, I couldn’t go swimming in the sea without looking behind me all the time. The film portrays a type of death which I find totally obsessive. If I was on a boat, stranded on the open sea, and you told me I had to swim back to shore I would do it, but I would be absolutely petrified that there was a shark behind me, out to get me. The death I fear most if not being drowned, but being eaten by a shark.

“If you are eaten by a shark you die before you have the chance to drown.

“I think the only way for me to deal with my fear would be to confront a Great White shark from the safety of a diver’s cage – although it may even make it worse, who knows!”

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