Paul Merson – ruled and ruined by compulsions

The horrors and misery of a gambling addiction have been laid bare by former footballer and manager Paul Merson in a memoir, who has wrestled with alcohol and cocaine as well. A documentary showed his brain patterns light up when shown gambling images but not looking at happy families.  His habit has cost him £7 million and he hopes by talking of his problems to shine a light on a condition which causes one suicide a day at the moment. “This is a hideous disease, cunning, baffling. It’s just constantly waiting all the time,” he said.

  He was born 20 March 1968 in London and has a complicated chart. His final degree Pisces Sun sits on the focal point of a Yod inconjunct Jupiter in flamboyant Leo sextile Neptune. With a Yod focal point Sun he will be an odd mix of low self-esteem and over-confidence and will have found moderating his will power tricky.

  One of Jupiter Neptune’s meanings, according to Ebertin, is a scandal or losses through one’s own instability and he has it in spades.

 The late November Lunar Eclipse and the May 2022 Lunar will affect his Neptune so will shake up his central Yod.

  He also has an unaspected Saturn in forced-to-be-self-reliant Aries so will lack structure and boundaries in certain areas of his life. Self-discipline and self-preservation can be lacking; and he will find it tricky to order and organise his life.





17 thoughts on “Paul Merson – ruled and ruined by compulsions

  1. I saw the BBC documentary this week about Paul, it was shocking & heartbreaking in turn. He’s been betting free for 7 months when it was filmed, so you can only hope. It also focused on outside influences, including TV adverts & online algorithms that put up on your phone to ensnare such a person, the mere placing of a bet gave him a high. Other footballers who have had betting addiction were also with him, it’s terrifying how the brain gets rewired in response to the constant media feeding the addiction.

  2. Just a quick note before work…
    I have had many friends, co-workers, clients and children of friends who were born in 1968.
    It seems to be a particularly challenging year… and of course, the history that year was appalling.

    I checked the Chiron placement for this man (don’t know of him!) and it is at 29 Pisces… only seconds off of his Sun. Pisces can be a challenge to navigate for the “regular” older guy… again.. another thing noted in my practice. SO sensitive in a non-defined way….but rarely any guidance in what to do with that!

    Add to that the weird combo of Saturn in Aries and NN in Aries…. like no matter what… your inner compass forces you towards Aries… and then you meet Saturn! (Many of the 1968 kids also have Chiron in Aries… sheesh!). With his Venus and Mercury also in Pisces…. AND that signature Pluto conj Uranus….

    oh my…. 1968 was a year.
    Still … his Saturn is conj. his NN so he could reach for the best of that and find his authentic authority from his life journey.

    bye for now!

    • also that Pluto/Uranus in Virgo is opp. his Sun/Chiron.
      These Pluto conj. Uranus people have fascinated me.
      Often, an intense Virgoan “properness” on the outside… and a nuclear reactor somewhere inside.
      Takes a long journey to understand and integrate that energy.

      I remember reading a quote from Robert Downey Jr. (1965?)… when he was in the throws of addiction.
      Something like…
      “I have a gun in my mouth and I like the taste of the metal”

  3. Reading your analysis, Marjorie, I wonder how an astrologer would advise someone who is born with such a tricky chart as this. On the one hand, Paul Merson has succeeded in becoming a professional footballer and football manager, both highly competitive endeavours. On the other, his life appears to have been blighted to an unusually severe extent, by the astrological hand he was dealt at birth. It seems a minefield, where all normal solutions are compromised. Where is the light or way through his difficulties? Has he in fact achieved as well as he could, in such very difficult circumstances?
    It’s a conundrum, isn’t it?

    • There’s no birth time and houses will make a considerable difference. I have seen much worse charts, more challenging I mean, and the individuals coped. There’s never a clear reason from the chart why some get a grip and others do not.

      • Marjorie. Even though there is no birth time. It appears to tie in with the brain pattern behaviour depicted on the show. It would be interesting to see a series of people looking at pictures, without them knowing that it depicts their natal chart and see if it ties in.

  4. His Aries Mars actually sits on the focal point of a yod between Uranus and Neptune.
    His Saturne is not unaspected, it forms a trigone to the the Moon.
    Jupiter squares Neptune.
    Wishing this man all the very best.

    • I too wish him all the very best. I was shocked that all the usual fall backs we rely on, were compromised. I hope he can find solace in some area of his life. Perhaps his public exposé of how devastating his gambling and other addictions have been, will help him, as well as others.

    • I had an alcoholic sibling who also had Mars in Aries and Neptune in Scorpio. I think it’s a really tricky combination because the energies involved are so contradictory and an Aries Mars so needs to express that raw, sometimes risk-taking Martian energy in a healthy way. My sibling loved to take unnecessary risks and flirt with danger as a child, so you can see how this planet when tied into Neptune could easily slip into addiction. Many athletes seem to have an Aries Mars — Tyson Fury has it for example and has struggled with depression too.

  5. Thank you. Is Pluto/Uranus conjunction must be hard to handle, especially in Virgo in the 4th house. His brain showed him not happy when looking photos of families. This charts shows that perhaps a parent had a problem. Or violence/constant criticism in the home? Saturn is in his 10th house and trine is 5th house Moon. The Moon also trines the Saturn/North Node midpoint. There is a lot of need to show self worth in the chart. Without looking it up Neptune may be Quincunx is Mars. A scorpion Neptune in the 5th house linked with Mars in Aries would make a head strong person looking for love. There appears to be a lot of unmet needs in this chart.

  6. interesting
    I too have my north node in scorpio. I am always aiming for simplicity. People not things. I have been told that there is a healing / healer element to this placement

  7. Hi Marjorie,

    Thanks for looking at this, but Merson was born in 20th March 1968 rather than 1958 according to various sources.

        • Well, Mercury Retrograde might have something to do with it?! Have spent two hours today looking for a delivery, only to find they sent it to completely the wrong address! In another town…..eventually, I just had to laugh.

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