Peter Crouch considered dropping down the divisions to prolong his playing career – and believes he could still make an impact in the Premier League – but has no regrets about hanging up his boots.
The Stoke City, Liverpool and Tottenham favourite retired last summer after a short spell with Burnley but has since been a familiar presence across radio, television and print.
Now 39, he hosts a popular podcast for the BBC, has written two best selling books and is a pundit for BT Sport and Amazon.
Yet in his latest column for the Daily Mail, he was asked what level he thinks he could still be playing effectively.
“It’s a difficult question to answer,” he said, “as I have been partial to the odd glass of vino since I retired so I’m not sure what levels of fitness I have. If it came to it, I still believe I could influence the last 15 to 20 minutes of a Premier League game.
“In fact, I reckon I could have done that for another two or three seasons, as my attributes had little to do with pace. In terms of dropping down the leagues, it was something I gave consideration to but things just opened up for me a couple of years ago.
“I started writing a Sportsmail column, my podcast took off and I published a book, so I moved into the media and I have not had a moment’s regret. But, of course, there are still days when I miss playing and I don’t think that will ever change.”