Athletes Who Got Greedy, Then Got Kicked Off The Team

According to his own autobiography (via the Mirror), Italian soccer player Antonio Cassano avoided a life in the gutter. Raised by a single mother in the poverty-stricken city of Bari, Cassano’s soccer career saved him from a life of crime. But his desire for authority, sex, and sugar cost him kicked off two top European teams.

At AS Roma, Cassano’s clashes with staff overshadowed his brilliance. He actively fought with coach Fabio Capello and called him “more fake than monopoly money.” Inexplicably, later coach Bruno Conti made Cassano team captain. Cassano let the title go to his head. Believing himself the big boss, he told Conti’s successor Luciano Spalletti, “[AS Roma] isn’t your house, it’s my house,” and he also added that the Roma players answered to him.

By 2006, Cassano was a liability, so Roma sold him to Real Madrid, where he was reunited with his old enemy Fabio Capello. At Real, Cassano became overweight and out of shape. According to El Futbolero, Nutella – a Real sponsor – gifted him 5 kg of Nutella every month, which he consumed with gusto. Per his own autobiography, (via Bleacher Report), his sweet tooth and an insatiable sexual appetite led to weight gain, neglect of his job as a player, and a sex addiction. Combine this with regular clashes with Capello over his playing time, and it is unsurprising that Real, per its then-president Ramon Calderon, saw him as a liability and unloaded him off to Sampdoria. Fortunately, Cassano corrected course and is, per Il Corriere dello Sport, happily married to Italian water polo athlete Carolina Marcialis.

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