Special - Stars Behind Bars

In light of the recent revelations over Steven Gerrard's alleged involvement in an early morning assault, Goal.com glances through the police files of other fallen idols.
John Terry (Chelsea) - January 2002

Prior to John Terry receiving the captain's armband for club and country, he was a young and impressionable 21-year old who caused commotion in a London nightclub when he was arrested for assault and being drunk and disorderly, following an unsavoury scuffle with a male receptionist that left the 28-year old with a deep facial gash.

Bradley Wright Phillips & Nathan Dyer (Southampton)
- March 2008

The lesser known member of Ian Wright's footballing offspring, Bradley Wright Phillips, and an accomplice - Nathan Dyer - were caught on CCTV sniggering while raiding handbags belonging to female bar staff at a night hosted by Rap and R'n'B star Kano. They allegedly stole £145, three mobile phones, and cigarettes, though while .Dyer was convicted of burglary, sentenced to community service and made to pay compensation and costs. Wright-Phillips pleaded not guilty, and opted to be tried at Crown Court. However the charges against him were subsequently were dropped owing to insufficient evidence.

Leroy Lita (Reading) - August 2006

The hardman striker is accustomed to using his head on the pitch, but was arrested over two-and-a-half years ago off the field for head-butting a man on a night out.

Michael Essien (Chelsea) - April 2007

The Ghana international has been the driving force in the Blues' star-studded midfield in seasons gone by, but in April last year Michael Essien was detained in the early hours by police on suspicion of drink driving. His agent, Fabien Piveteau, defended Essien's innocence, and said at the time: "I do not understand this. There is no problem. I have seen the paper, the policeman did a test and it was negative."

Zat Knight (Aston Villa) - August 2007

Tall centre-back Zat Knight got his Aston Villa career underway in the most bizarre fashion when, just hours before being unveiled as a Villan, the former Fulham defender was arrested during an armed drugs raid. Zat, 28, together with his brother Carlos, were reportedly led out of his mother's house in handcuffs, due to the seizure of large amounts of heroin and cocaine.

Marlon King (Hull City) - December 2008

Jamaican international and current Tigers striker Marlon King was arrested earlier in the month after he was accused of attacking a woman in a nightclub. The Mirror reported that King, 28, was pestering the 20-year old woman, and was touching her bottom despite her protestations. The Hull forward then punched her in the face leaving her with a suspected broken nose and a swollen lip. He was arrested for indecent assault and actual bodily harm.

Joey Barton (Newcastle United) - 2007 & 2008

The no-nonsense tough-tackling midfielder is no stranger to controversy whether he is on the pitch and baring his behind, or off the pitch and attracting arrests with as much regularity as a conceded Newcastle United goal. In 2007 he was under police custody for assault and criminal damage following an altercation with a taxi driver. Later that year he was arrested - and later charged and gaoled for six months - for common assault and affray in Liverpool city centre due to a fight with a man six years his junior.

And one from abroad...

Former Bundesliga star Thorstan Legat was fined €1,000 for injuring a gang member with his samurai sword. The incident occured in 2007, but has only recently been concluded in court.

-- Goal.com international