Patrice Evra: Former France star opens up about sexual abuse and depression
Former France international footballer Patrice Evra has come out with his worst nightmare, describing how he was abused by a club bouncer when he was just 10 years old.
Evra and his family, including his twin brother, are now fighting to get the criminal case against the young man in the UK to be heard.
“I got it in my head that the footballers came and looked after us, brought us to games and things like that,” Evra explained. “I always dreamt of being a professional and I always wanted to play football. But I never dreamed that I’d be abused.”
Evra was 12 when he first encountered the young man and the abuse only really began to take hold when Evra turned 15, when the family relocated to France.
The youngster would wait in the club changing rooms until the players arrived and had a chance to chat to either the manager or assistant manager, before then going to a room where he would undress completely and try on his kit.
“I remember one time the manager of the club came knocking and opened the door and I was 10-years-old wearing a suit. I sat down on the floor and started sobbing and I couldn’t control it all the way,” Evra said.
“He said, ‘You are one of the best players at this club. You have a long career ahead of you. If you like football, we should meet up and decide what you are going to do about it.”
The young man replied with a simple yes, but Evra’s dreams of being a top professional died before they had even begun.
Now, 17 years after his abuse first began, Evra hopes to convince the footballing authorities to bring the alleged abuser to justice.
The former footballer was