Mark Bresciano has become a cannabis farmer since hanging up the boots in 2015.
Mark Bresciano has become a cannabis farmer since hanging up the boots in 2015.

More Green Than Gold: How Socceroos hero has gone to pot

FORMER Serie A star Mark Bresciano has sent his career up in smoke ... by becoming a cannabis farmer.

The 84-cap Australia international had long spells with Parma and Palermo, and also played for Lazio and Empoli.

Winger Bresciano agreed a four-year contract with Manchester City in 2008, but remained with Palermo when the deal broke down

Now retired and living in Melbourne, the 38-year-old has begun growing dope for medical uses.

Mark Bresciano has opted for a surprise career change.
Mark Bresciano has opted for a surprise career change.

He said: "I'm investing in property these days, and working on cultivating cannabis.

"At present I am studying with a partner who is working towards producing marijuana-based medicines within the next year.

"The company is called Greenhope. We have identified a site and obtained the necessary licences.

"There is still a long way to go before we can produce cannabis-based drugs.

"For the moment we are going to Canada and the US to learn more, as well as Europe - where there are experts.

The good ol’ green stuff.
The good ol’ green stuff.

"I miss playing football. It is like a religion in Italy.

"But I have lost my passion for the professional game. I am just a spectator these days."

Greenhope has launched a fledgling website, bearing the message: "Hope Is Coming ... the movement is medicinal."

Bresciano hung up his boots in 2015 after a three-year spell with Qatari club Al-Gharafa.

This article originally appeared on The Sun