Ex-Juventus, Arsenal star-turned-Swiss watchmaker Lichtsteiner joins record of unlikely post-soccer careers


After spending 20 years as an expert footballer, former Juventus and Arsenal full-back Stephan Lichtsteiner introduced his lengthy and distinguished profession to an finish final season.

The previous Switzerland captain spent the 2019-20 marketing campaign with Augsburg in Germany and had initially deliberate to bow out after Euro 2020. Nonetheless, the event’s postponement till this yr pressured the veteran to alter his plans and produce ahead his retirement, calling time on a taking part in profession that landed him 16 main membership trophies and two Champions League runner-up medals.

Ex-pros’ new careers: Music | Meals & Drink | Artwork | Tech | Politics

Now 37, Lichtsteiner is forging a second profession, although not one that you simply may immediately anticipate a former footballer to decide on. Relatively than making the compulsory transfer into teaching or media work, he has begun retraining as a watchmaker, beginning a six-month internship with Zurich-based timepiece producers Maurice de Mauriac.

“I need to do one thing productive,” he instructed Reuters. “If you’re a banker, you are able to do that for all of your life, however if you’re a footballer when you hit your mid-30s, you must discover one thing else to do.”

Lichtsteiner is hoping to finish his first watch, the “L3 Sees Crimson,” from scratch throughout his internship earlier than promoting the piece for charity. Whether or not or not he continues within the watchmaking occupation past that is still to be seen, however Maurice de Mauriac are smitten by their new trainee and his prospects.

“We had numerous functions however Stephan was essentially the most enthusiastic,” firm co-owner and artwork director Leonard Dreifuss mentioned, whereas CEO Massimo Dreifuss added: “We’re aiming for a long-term partnership and can transfer step-by-step.”

Lichtsteiner turns into the most recent ex-footballer to retire and retrain in one other business completely. However he’s removed from the primary, with gamers taking over roles in a various vary of vocations — some extra stunning than others.

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After all, many gamers have dabbled in music through the years although primarily as a sideline or ardour undertaking; an extra-curricular distraction from their day job, somewhat than a full-time pursuit, Nonetheless, each former Liverpool striker Djibril Cisse and Valencia midfielder Gaizka Mendieta have discovered common work as membership night time DJs since calling quits on soccer. In the meantime, since being pressured to retire by way of damage, former Porto striker Jackson Martinez has began over as a hip-hop artist in his native Colombia.

In the meantime, former Barcelona goalkeeper Jose Manuel Pinto briefly labored as a music producer (and even had one in every of his songs featured on the “Quick & Livid 8” film soundtrack) earlier than extra lately qualifying as a health teacher.

Food and drinks

As you may anticipate from a few cultured midfielders, each Andrea Pirlo and Andres Iniesta each have sidelines within the refined world of winemaking. Pirlo has owned a 15-acre winery in Brescia since 2007, whereas Iniesta’s household have a total bodega arrange of their dwelling province of Albacete, Spain.


Daniel Agger was recognized to be a fan of tattoos throughout his soccer profession with the vast majority of his physique coated in artwork, together with a big Viking-inspired mural throughout his total again and “YNWA” throughout his knuckles in tribute to Liverpool FC. Since retiring, the Dane has certified as a tattoo artist himself and posts semi-regular photos of his handiwork on social media. In a extra conventional sense, former Wolverhampton Wanderers defender Jody Craddock is now a positive artist, specialising in extremely practical celeb portraiture.


Main the sphere within the know-how sector is former Arsenal and AC Milan midfielder Matthieu Flamini, who has devoted his post-football profession to creating advances in inexperienced vitality. Certainly, the Frenchman heads a pioneering biochemical firm which goals, amongst different issues, to excellent a course of of producing Levulinic Acid, an artificial substitute for crude oil. On the digital facet of issues, former Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes has an curiosity within the tech world having created a Spanish relationship app referred to as “Hola.”


Such is his recognition in his dwelling nation that Andriy Shevchenko felt impressed to stand as a candidate within the 2012 Ukrainian parliamentary election. He was unable to win illustration, however now he manages the Ukraine nationwide crew so in a means he nonetheless received. Romario‘s foray into politics proved just a little extra profitable, with the previous Barcelona striker getting elected to the Brazilian senate in 2014 after garnering essentially the most votes ever acquired by a candidate from the state of Rio de Janeiro. Nonetheless, maybe essentially the most profitable world class striker-turned-politician on report should be George Weah, who was voted in as president of Liberia in 2018.



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