NEW Liversedge striker Ross McCormack told the T&A he has “a million more things” to reveal about the end to his time as a professional footballer, and believes people will seem him in a different light then.

It poses the question about how much we actually know the players we watch on a weekly basis.

Media training is a key part of being a footballer in the spotlight nowadays, and often means those players won’t open up too much if any criticism comes their way, for fear of antagonising the situation.

The fact McCormack, who was often labelled a “bad egg”, due to things like his broken gate that stopped him from attending training at Aston Villa, as well as untrue rumours about the money he was on and the way he left Leeds, is happy to be open and honest is a positive.

But the fact he still has more to tell, and is only revealing these things years after they took place, is a sign footballers, during their professional careers, feel forced to hide things.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Despite his goals, Ross McCormack was not always seen in the most favourable light at Leeds.Despite his goals, Ross McCormack was not always seen in the most favourable light at Leeds. (Image: PA.)

That being said, he told me: “People definitely have stereotypes of footballers, but I guess they do about various people in any walk of life.

“I’ve never really complained about anything like that, but in terms of me letting out a few things, there’s a million more things I still have to say about what happened towards the end of my career which no-one knows about.

“I’ll do that in good time, and I’m sure a few people’s opinions might change when they hear what I say.

I sat down with Phil (Hay from The Athletic) this summer and had a coffee with him and discussed some of those incidents in more detail. I’ve known him for years and I respect him and trust him.

“I just say it how it is, I’ll always try and do that, without shying away from anything that requires honesty and I’ll continue to do that.

“I know what you’re saying about the stereotypes of footballers, but that’s what you sign up for, you’ll get criticism and praise.

“But it’s important you don’t let the latter go to your head or the former overtake over your life.

“I’ve always been good at levelling it out so I have no problem with that.”

McCormack is surprisingly positive given the flak that his come his way in the past, and asked if he had any regrets over his career, he said: “It’s hard to say whether I have regrets.

“I’ve not been involved in football for the last couple of years and that’s when you tend to reflect and realise just what you’ve done in the game.

“Playing in the Championship, you had no time, even if you scored a hat-trick on the Saturday, you couldn’t let it sink in, as you were training on the Sunday and you had another game on the Tuesday.

“It was harder to appreciate the game then, but I’ve sat down over the last couple of years and gone through a few different scenarios from my career

“There’s a little bit of regret there, as I believe I was good enough to play in the Premier League.

“There were a couple of times I was close to going, but the club I was at at the time wouldn’t let me leave.

“Scotland, for sure, I probably should have had more than the 13 caps I got.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Ross McCormack celebrates a goal for Scotland during one of his 13 caps.Ross McCormack celebrates a goal for Scotland during one of his 13 caps. (Image: PA.)

“But overall, there’s nothing too much to regret. I loved every minute of it.

“I loved playing, but more than that, I loved the interaction with the boys and the people within the club.

“Growing up, I didn’t see any other industry I was going to be as good at as football, so I put all my eggs in that basket.

“From where I grew up, on the southside of Glasgow, with everything I achieved in the game, I’ve got no right to sit here and say I really regret anything, so no it’s all positive.”

Talking about the peak of his career, McCormack said: “I think I played well at Leeds, but at Fulham, there were two seasons in a row where I felt every time I went on the pitch, I’d score or assist.

“I wouldn’t say I felt invincible but I always felt I’d have a positive impact on the game.

“My confidence was so high, but I wasn’t arrogant about it, I just knew I was in a good place with my football.

“It was easy to enjoy myself in that period.”

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Ross McCormack could not stop scoring at Fulham.Ross McCormack could not stop scoring at Fulham. (Image: PA.)

Liversedge is not his only focus of course, and talking about his move into the housing industry, as a director at FeatureWalls UK, McCormack said: “It came a little bit out of the blue, but I’ve always liked networking and I’m in touch with a lot of good people in the trade.

“I believe you’ll see more and more of these feature walls going forward, and that in a few years, a lot of developers who build new-build houses will have these as an added or optional extra.

“It’s another little thing I like, as I just enjoyed interacting with people and having chats.

“The opportunity was just something that came up and I thought it sounded good.

“I’m obvious learning every day about different things to do with that business too, so I’m enjoying that as well.”

McCormack seems to be in a positive place right now, combining a job he loves with still playing the game he loves, but many would have struggled with the stick he had from bosses, pundits and fans down the years, so it's always worth remembering that footballers are human too, with their own stories to tell.