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Tottenham defender Bassong: Football rescued me from crime

Tottenham defender Sebastien Bassong admits football rescued him from a life of crime.

Bassong grew up in a rough neighbourhood in northern Paris where drugs and law-breaking were rampant.

Cameroon defender Bassong told the Daily Star: "I came from a rough area. You had to be very strong. If you were weak, people would walk all over you. You had to earn the respect of those around you, and I made a lot of mistakes.

"When you're young you want to prove to your mates that you're a strong guy, a bit of a gangster. But when I go back there now to visit my parents, I can see where my old friends are now. Some are in prison.

"That could have happened to me, but my dad was strong. If I was going wrong, I would get a big slap round the head. When you're going down the wrong road, sometimes you make mistakes and you get caught, but I was lucky - I never got caught!"

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