Belfast Telegraph

Gambling addict Kyle Lafferty 'never happier' after going a year without placing a bet

Northern Ireland striker Kyle Lafferty has said he has "never been happier" after going a year without gambling.

Lafferty, who recently moved back to Rangers after a stint at Hearts, admitted a gambling problem had cost him thousands of pounds around 18 months ago.

However, he has not placed a bet since September 11 2017.

Posting on social media he said he thought he would "never see the day" that he would go a year without gambling.

He said he had been in a "dark place" before tackling his addiction.

Lafferty was found guilty of breaching FA gambling rules and handed a £23,000 fine in August 2016. He said after the fine he feared he would not get a place in Northern Ireland's Euro 2016. He went on to start two of the games.

He has said he has 'lost big' in the past but that it wasn't enough to worry him because he knew a big signing-on fee or bonus would cover any losses.

The 30-year-old said his issues with gambling began after he made his 2008 switch from Burnley to Rangers.

Speaking in September 2017, he said: "About halfway through my contract with Rangers I didn't have anything better to do after training than go to the bookies or sit online. Betting on football had been banned and, if anything, things got worse. I'd bet on horses instead."

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