At the age of 30 he gave up sales and marketing to pursue his calling as a coach and ended up in the MLS for two years. He's now moved to Seoul to start again...
There are key differences - largely off the pitch - but Liverpool fan Sam Drury has spotted five things that are similar five years on. A big sale, a big Italian arrival...
1) Which Arsenal left-back has been released after making his first start for Arsenal in a Champions League game against Olympiacos last season?
2) Which former Aston Villa right-back has signed a two-year deal with Nottingham Forest this summer after being released?
3) Name four of the five clubs represented by Heidar Helguson in English football.
4) Name Chelsea's three Champions League medal winners who have been released this summer.
5) Name the Welsh international striker released by Crystal Palace to join Millwall on a free transfer this summer.
6) Phil Neville was drafted into the back-up squad for World Cup 2006 after the withdrawal of which mediocre Aston Villa central midfielder?
7) Which released Fulham player featured in the 2003 FA Cup final?
8) Which former Arsenal striker was the first player ever to score a hat-trick at the Emirates Stadium but has been released by Hull this summer?
9) Name the Scotland international released by Liverpool this summer.
10) What's the significance of the name 'Francois' to released Man City player Kolo Toure?
11) The brother of which former multiple title winner has been released by Manchester United this summer?
12) With which club did released right-back Danny Simpson win the Championship while on loan in 2007?
13) Which striker has been released by Norwich despite scoring the goal to take the Canaries up to the Premier League two years ago?
14) Which released right-back had eight seasons at Crystal Palace before helping Southampton from League One to the Premier League?
15) Which released Stoke player scored a goal at the 2010 World Cup?
16) With which club did Titus Bramble begin his career?
17) Name the former Tottenham trainee who was released by Swansea this summer to join Charlton.
18) How many Premier League titles did William Gallas win in 12 years of football in England?
19) Which released West Brom player had an ill-fated spell at Celtic after joining for £3.8m.
20) Which released West Ham player holds the record for the number of England substitute appearances (7) without starting a game?
The answers are here, people...