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  Michael Owen isn't ashamed of his gambling
Updated 20 January 2003, 15.18
Michael Owen says there's nothing wrong with his gambling
Michael Owen has said he has nothing to be ashamed of after reports that he's lost loads of money gambling.

The Liverpool and England star is reported to have lost as much as 40,000 over the last couple of years - although he says it isn't that much.

It's reckoned Owen is paid around 70,000 a week to play for Liverpool. So losing that much money wouldn't affect him as much as someone in a less well-paid job.

Horse racing is one Michael Owen's fave hobby
Owen has admitted he likes gambling.

But since he hasn't broken any rules to do with football and is old enough to put bets on, he thinks he's been unfairly treated.

The rules say footballers aren't allowed to put bets on games they are playing in or competitions their teams are playing in.

So Owen couldn't back another team to win the Premiership, for example.

Bad for his image?

He also said horse racing is his main hobby outside football and the bad publicity around his gambling won't change that.

Owen is usually seen as quite a clean-living role model.

But now because he's admitted gambling, there are worries he may be seen as less of a good example to young people.

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