GERMANY GOALKEEPER RENE Adler has revealed his fears about suffering from depression and his concerns about avoiding a similar fate to Robert Enke, who committed suicide after struggling with the illness.
“We had both felt we are similar, which has scared me, because I could follow a similar path,” Hamburg goalkeeper Adler told German magazine Stern, three years after the suicide of his Germany team-mate and fellow goalkeeper Enke.
“We are both sensitive and had no desire to put ourselves under more pressure against each other. The pressure of playing for the national team is large enough.”
Adler was recalled to the Germany squad for Wednesday’s goalless draw with Holland in Amsterdam after some impressive displays for Hamburg in the Bundesliga.
Having spent the last year out of the Germany squad through injury and after losing his place at previous club Bayer Leverkusen, Adler says he has to be careful “that I don’t fall into depression.
I put myself under much too much pressure, the body looks for a way to release the valve and in my case it was injury after injury,” he added having admitted it made him consider retiring.
Having had to watch while his former club Leverkusen played eventual winners Chelsea and Spanish giants Barcelona in the Champions League last season, Adler admitted he had dark thoughts during that period.
“It is brutal to feel that you can be replaced,” he said. ”To quit football would have felt the same for me if a member of my family had died.”
The 27-year-old admits it got to the point when he could not face talking to his Leverkusen team-mates.
“I was happy when I was back home again. I just had no desire to talk to people.”