Former football player Paul Gascoigne blamed his early exit from a television show on Saturday morning for sleeping pills.
The former England midfielder insisted he was not drunk on Sky's Soccer AM, where he was hosted alongside Inbetweeners actor Joe Thomas.
Gascoigne, who has forged his career in Newcastle and Spurs, has been struggling with alcoholism for more than 20 years
His last stay in rehab was in 2017, after the death of his nephew.
After leaving Soccer AM in the middle of the show, Gascoigne responded to concerns in the social media, indicating that he "looked" during the TV recording.
He wrote on Twitter, saying that people would say "I was drunk," but went on to explain that he had "taken sleeping pills to try kip."
His appearance on the show attracted both horror and sympathy in social media.
Some viewers bemoaned the condition of the footballer with a saying "he can hardly speak", and another argues that he "should not make public appearances".
But the supporters jumped in defense of the 51-year-old and urged critics of the player "to have some respect for this guy".
Another said, "Gazza could sit still and still be class."
In 2013, the Football Association and the England Footballers Foundation donated £ 40,000 to fund the treatment of the popular international footballer at an addiction center in Arizona.
The midfielder is best known for his performance at the 1990 World Cup, with England for the first time since 1966 reached the semi-finals of the tournament.
He was a talented and emotional player whom he made known in the match against Germany with a yellow card, meaning that he would not have played in the final if England had made progress.