'I drive for Uber now', reveals Turkey legend Hakan Sukur

Source: Getty Images

Former Turkey striker Hakan Sukur now lives in Washington DC and reveals he drives for Uber to make a living.

Sukur retired in 2008 after an impressive career and used his fame in Turkey to transition into politics, winning a seat in Turkey's parliament in 2011 as a member of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's party.

He fell out with Erdogan though, and, after resigning from the party in 2013, was accused of involvement in an attempted coup on the country's leader.

In 2015 he moved to the United States in exile, along with his wife and children, originally running a cafe in California.

"I have nothing left, Erdogan took everything: my right to liberty, freedom of expression and right to work,” the 48-year-old said to German newspaper Welt am Sonntag.

“Nobody seems able to explain what my role in this coup was supposed to be. I never did anything illegal, I am not a traitor or a terrorist.

“I might be an enemy this government, but not the state or the Turkish nation. I love my country.

"After the split with Erdogan, I started to receive threats. My wife’s shop was attacked, my children were harassed, my father put in prison and all my assets confiscated.

“So I moved to the United States, initially running a café in California, but strange people kept coming into the bar.

"Now I drive for Uber and I sell books.”

Sukur is Turkey's record goalscorer with 51 goals in 112 caps. He was a star for Turkey at the 2002 FIFA World Cup where they finished third - famously scoring the fastest World Cup goal against Korea Republic in under 11 seconds.

At club level he spent the majority of his career at Galatasaray, winning the Turkish Super Lig eight times and top-scoring thrice.

He also had stints in Italy - with Inter Milan, Torino and Parma - and England with Blackburn Rovers, where he was teammates with Australia international Lucas Neill.