POSH DIARY: Former Posh star still enjoying a life of crime

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AS new occupations for former footballers go, Ricky Otto's role as a probation officer is one of the most unlikely.

AS new occupations for former footballers go, Ricky Otto's role as a probation officer is one of the most unlikely.In a way he is perfectly suited to his new job as he once spent four years detained at Her Majesty's pleasure for armed robbery. On his release he played for Leyton Orient before Barry Fry signed him three times, for Southend, for Birmingham and finally for Posh.

Otto was an aggressive winger who enjoyed little success in a struggling Posh side. Upon retirement in 2001 he became a probation officer and he is now also currently studying for a degree in theology.

Otto said: "After my criminal past I always knew that I wanted to work with offenders. When I started the job it felt as though I was delivering the programme to myself - I was so heavily entrenched in that behaviour.

"It was weird working with prisoners on the wing and in the cells. The memories all came flooding back and it made me realise how far I'd come as I still have friends doing life sentences.

"When I was involved in crime, hanging on the street, or playing football I was caught up in a materialistic society. Pride was a big part of that.

"I was young and hot-headed, I felt I had to live up to my reputation, it was a weight on my back. I believed the life I was living was the greatest life, but I paid a great price for it.

"To be honest I'm just glad to be alive. Three years ago I gave my life to God and was baptised - that's when I decided to study the bible.

"Some people think I must have freaked out, but I always say that God can take out the baddest man and humble him. Playing football was a privilege and I do miss the banter.

"I go to St Andrews now and again, but usually I'm studying at weekends. After my start in life it's amazing that I had a football career, it was only when I finished playing that I realised the magnitude of what I'd done.

"Without football I would probably be dead now."

Otto played 15 games on loan to Posh from Birmingham at the back end of the club's relegation season of 1996-97. He scored six goals.

HAVE you come across any ex-pros now working in Civvy Street? If so, let us know. Comment below or email alan.swann@peterboroughtoday.co.uk

Jobs for retired footballers:

Posh bad boy Ray Hankin went on to work as a Football in the Community Officer for Newcaste where part of his brief was educating young players on how to behave.

Posh full-back Mike Imlach quit football and went to work on an oli rig.

Posh full-back David McVay became a journalist on the Nottingham Evening Post following his retirement from playing. He used to report on Nottingham Forest matches and broke the news that Justin Fashanu was gay.

Long-serving Posh player Noel Luke went on to become landlord of the Posh Pub.

Posh centre-back Lee Howarth is a lecturer on sport at Moulton College in Northampton.

Posh wing wizard Worrell Sterling went on to deliver sofas for DFS. He is now a PE lecturer at Peterborough Regional College.

Posh full-back Dave Langan became a car park attendant.

Posh midfielder Anders Koogi is a postman in Denmark.

Posh full-back Ashley Neal became a driving instructor.

Posh goalkeeper Bart Griemink was a taxi driver in Boston the last we heard.