Former England international striker now has a very different profession… and even invented an instrument
SWITCH on property show Homes Under the Hammer, and football fans will be forgiven for doing a double take.
Alongside series stalwart Martin Roberts – of I’m a Celebrity fame and new presenter Martel Maxwell – you will find none other than former football star Dion Dublin.
Isn’t he meant to be a footballer?
He is! Well, he was anyway until 2008 when he retired – he is 48 now.
But in a superb career at the top level of English football, he earned a move to Manchester United in 1992 from lowly Cambridge United.
A broken leg meant a scuppered time under Sir Alex Ferguson during which time the club signed the one and only Eric Cantona, so a move to Coventry followed in 1994.
A prolific spell there followed, and then he moved to Aston Villa in 1998 in a year he won four England caps under Glenn Hoddle.
In 2004 he moved to Leicester, by which time he was often playing in defence rather than attack – and spells at Celtic and Norwich followed before his career finished having scored 111 Premier League goals.
So why is he presenting Homes Under the Hammer?
After playing football, Dublin worked in the media as a pundit, commentator and football phone-in presenter on Sky and the BBC.
But in 2015, he became the beneficiary of a BBC Diversity Creative Talent Fund grant for training up promising future TV presenters and began presenting the show that year alongside Roberts and then-host Lucy Alexander.
Alexander has been replaced in May 2017 by former Sun journalist Martel Maxwell.
He received around £50,000 to train him to host the show despite earning £20,000 per week in his height as a footballer.
But has he encountered any criticism for his performances on the property show?
He began his presenting career to mixed reviews, while many where just confused that he was fronting the show – which sees investors buy homes at auction before renovating them – at all.
Indeed, while he did receive some strong reviews, one woman even wrote to the BBC to complain, while Dublin himself tweeted at the time that he will “try and do better”.
But two years on, it seems Dublin is right at home now on Homes Under the Hammer.
Doesn’t he also play an instrument?
He did not just play one – he invented one called The Dube.
The likes of Stevie Wonder, One Direction’s drummer, and the Official England Supporters Band all have one of the ex-Premier League player’s percussion instruments.
Dublin said he was always a percussionist, which inspired him to create the wooden box which comes in all different shapes and sizes.
He said: “One day I decided to go to a hardware store – I picked up six pieces of wood, a hammer and nails, and built a box. It probably sounded useless at the time but it’s taken me to where I am today.”