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Page last updated at 11:35 GMT, Wednesday, 30 December 2009
Guest editor: Tony Adams


Tony Adams reviews his programme

Each year, the Today programme hands over the editorial reins to six public figures, giving them a chance to decide what goes on the programme between Christmas and New Year.

On December 30th, the programme was edited by the footballer Tony Adams. You can hear highlights from his programme using the links below - many of which are extended versions of those heard on air.

Tony Adams had a very public battle with alcoholism during his playing career, following which he founded the Sporting Chance Clinic to help fellow sportsmen through similar crises.

His programme featured an in-depth interview with footballer Joey Barton about his Sporting Chance aided recovery and asked sports presenter Rob Bonnet to look into whether sports stars are more likely to develop an addiction than the rest of the population.

Adams' own alcohol addiction has seen him spend time in prison for drink driving. Correspondent Bob Walker investigated how alcohol and drug abuse are being dealt with in prisons. He met former inmates at The Bridges residential centre in Hull, run by drugs charity RAPT of which Tony Adams is a patron.

As a footballer set on a professional career from the age of six, Adams has little idea about what it is to be a football fan. He asked comedian Alan Davies and Jason Cowley, editor of the New Statesman, to explain how it was done.

And as an out-of-work football manager, he wanted to find out whether business management and football management had much to teach one another. Business editor and Arsenal fan Robert Peston and Professor Stefan Szymanski, of Cass Business School debated the issue.

He was part of the hit-making team that made All the Way , England's football anthem for the 1988 European Championship finals (which you can see here ). BBC 6 Music presenter Gideon Coe looked back at the success of sporting songs.

Adams began his career as an apprentice footballer during the 1980s, at the same time as Kate Hoey MP was an education advisor at Arsenal. Mr Adams and Ms Hoey look back on the old Arsenal.

He spent his entire playing career of 22 years at Arsenal football club. Football commentator Stuart Hall looked back on Adams' successful career.

Adams highlighted a new campaign to protect war memorial fields created in memory of those who died in the two wars. The Field in Trust's chief executive Alison Moore-Gwyn discussed the importance of saving these historical landmarks.


Tony Adams was born in Romford in 1966 and joined the Arsenal youth team in 1980.

At the age of 17 he made his first team debut as a central defender, a position he played in for his entire 22 year career, 17 of them as captain. He won the league title four times and the FA Cup three with the club and is the most successful captain in the clubs history.

Adams also captained England, and was part of the team that reached the semi-finals of Euro '96.

Since retiring in 2002 he turned his hand to management, serving stints at Wycombe Wanderers and Portsmouth.

A recovering alcoholic, Adams set up the Sporting Chance Clinic in 2000 which provides treatment, counselling and support for sports men and women with drink, drug or gambling addictions.

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