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Ex- Premier League star Paddy Kenny was so sozzled when his pal bit off his eyebrow over a curry bill that it didn't hurt one bit.
The former Leeds United and Sheffield United goalkeeper spilled the beans to Daily Star Online on his colourful life in a tell-all book and he wanted to set the record straight about the incident that left his face "pouring with blood".
The rumour had been that the row was over an alleged affair Kenny's friend was having with the footballer's first wife Karen, but the 42-year-old dismissed that and said the reason was much more simple.
Kenny said: "It was over who was going to foot the bill for the curry.
"My other friends and me had left the curry house and he thought I should pay for it. He thought I was giving it the 'biggun' and went for me.
"At the time I don't remember it hurting, alcohol does that to you, but blood was spurting everywhere. It hurt like hell the next morning though.
"I was playing in the Premier League at the time so I can understand why it was a big story but that's what happened, I'm not sure how the story got distorted.
"I know I've had a bit off trouble off the pitch but it was really embarrassing and it was a difficult time, trying to perform in the Premier League while all that was going on."
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Kenny said he has only seen the mate who bit his eyebrow off once since the incident happened 14 years ago.
He added: "My brother died three years ago and he came to the funeral.
"I ended up having a beer with him. We've grown up and moved on."
Kenny did not make his professional debut until he was 21, going on to make more than 600 professional appearances before hanging up his gloves in 2018.
He was promoted to the Premier League twice, with Sheffield United and Queens Park Rangers, and played seven times for Ireland – but despite his success on the pitch, he never gave up his love for a night out.
The stopper was one of the leaders of the Blades' drinking club, which continued even after they reached the top flight in 2006, and said they had to keep their antics a secret from intimidating boss Neil Warnock.
Kenny said: "We had more than our fair share of all day sessions. We'd really go for it on Tuesday if we didn't have a midweek game and had Wednesday off training.
"Neil Warnock probably didn't even know!
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"We kept it quiet from him but that was 15 years ago, it wouldn't be possible nowadays with the way social media is today. If we went out for an old-fashioned knees up I guarantee pictures would have been all over the internet.
"Alan Quinn, Derek Geary, myself – the Irish lads really! We were the ringleaders. We had a great group at Sheffield United and it was really important for building team spirit – you can see that with our results on the pitch."
Since retiring from football two years ago, Kenny has launched his own car transporting firm.
The ex-footballer says he has no desire to return to the game on a full-time basis as he enjoys his free weekends too much.
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He was also a regular on boozy Sheffield United away days before the coronavirus lockdown with a lot of pals being diehard Blades fans.
Kenny played for the team for eight years and some of the supporters have to do a double when he turns up in the away end.
He said: "It does shock a few of them (Sheffield United fans) when I turn up in the away end.
"I travel down with the lads, have a few beers, it's just a good boozy day out. It's great that the team is doing so well at the moment, the fans deserve it.
"As much as I love football, I love having my weekends to myself.
"I can spend time with my family, go for a few beers, do what I want to do on my schedule.
"I did some coaching with my old mate Rob Page at Northampton, but I didn't really enjoy it. It was too much hard work!"
- Kenny's book The Gloves Are Off by Vertical Editions, on sale on Monday, October 5.
- Premier League
- Sheffield United FC
- Leeds United FC
- Queens Park Rangers FC
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