Disgraced Sheffield Wednesday striker Gary Madine has vowed from his prison cell: “I’ll never get in trouble again.”
The striker, who is serving an 18-month sentence for two attacks in city centre bars in Sheffield, broke his silence to make the pledge to go straight.
Madine, of Middlewood, was jailed after being found guilty of the two assaults – one in the Paris Bar in February last year and the other in The Viper Rooms four weeks later.
He knocked both victims unconscious, breaking one’s nose and the other’s cheekbone.
Madine already had a criminal record for assault, after he knocked another man unconscious in an attack in a bar in Carlisle when he played for Carlisle United.
Speaking from behind bars, the disgraced footballer said he was keen to continue his football career when he is released but is also considering getting into property and opening up a coffee shop as alternative career routes.
He said: “I am looking forward to playing again though and scoring loads of goals.”
Madine, who is still on Wednesday’s books but has not been paid his £5,000-a-week wages since he was convicted, said: “I’m serving my punishment and just looking to a successful future. I’ve been training a lot in the gym and working hard to prepare.
“After this I’m never going to get in trouble again.
“I will be working with Leeds Rhinos Under-19s, who are having a tour of the prison, and there are other things I am working on after release like a property development business and plans to open a coffee shop down the line. It is all very positive.”
Madine, known on the terraces as ‘the Goal Machine’, has scored 26 league goals in 91 games for Sheffield Wednesday and is following a fitness plan in prison.
Jailing him, Judge Rodney Jameson QC said other professional footballers had rebuilt careers after serving time in jail, and there as no reason why Madine could not follow suit.
The court heard he struck out during both incidents due to ‘drink, childish behaviour and a temper’.
Leeds Crown Court, where the footballer went on trial, was told that Madine turned into ‘an arrogant, violent thug’ when drunk.