Former England star Paul Gascoigne revealed his heart stopped three times while in rehab, in a television interview being broadcast on Monday.
Gazza told Sky News presenter Kay Burley that last year's sudden rumours that he had died were closer to the truth than the public realised.
He said: "My heart failed on us a few times," adding that his father John had collapsed with worry at his illness.
The interview, in the company of his father, sister Lindsay and two young nephews shows the ex-Newcastle and Tottenham player having a kickabout on the beach. He proudly declares: "No-one is ever going to be as good as I was."
Gascoigne has had a well-publicised battle with alcohol, and admits that only four months ago he was drinking 30 cans of strong lager per day, but he says he can be around alcohol without giving in to temptation.
"I can be around it now because all I have got to do is remember my last drink. If I remember my last drink, which I can't, well I sort of can, getting fed with a spoon because I had the shakes that bad."
He also describes his suicide attempt. "In the bath yes, it's the easy way out they say, you know, take a few sleeping tablets, nice little warm bath and have a few drinks and just drop. I had just had enough, I had had enough of everything, you know.
"I rang my sister just to say, I am going to run a bath. I think she might have had a clue, I don't know if it was a plea for help but I did have enough anyway so I wasn't bothered.
"And I just said, look I am in the bath and I will always love you, or something like that, and put the phone down, and I run the bath and I lay in the bath and just felt myself dropping off and I remember just getting ready, like dozing off you know and then the police burst in. About six police dragged us out of the bath."
Highlights of the interview will be broadcast on Sky News from 6am.
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