1. CARLOS ROA (above)
After a succession of fine displays at the 1998 World Cup in France, the Argentina goalkeeper was courted by Manchester United and Arsenal.
However, he then went AWOL for two whole years, joining a religious cult that predicted the end of the world.
When that didn't happen, he returned to football, turning out for a handful of lowly Spanish sides. By this time, however, his time had gone.
2. PHILIPPE CHRISTANVAL
An athletic and gifted defender whose reading of the game and defensive poise propelled Monaco to the French League title in 2000.
A £6.5 million ($13m) move to Barcelona soon followed, but his career nosedived as he struggled to cope with the weight of expectation and a series of injuries.
By 2005, he was turning out for Fulham reserves and, four years later, he retired after failing to find a club willing to give him a game. He was 30 years old.