A lifestyle coach who defrauded Stoke City forward Peter Osaze Odemwingie and six other clients out of more than £80,000 has pledged to pay them back.
Claire Duke of London Colney in Hertfordshire, admitted seven frauds.
Stafford Crown Court heard how the she had charged clients for holidays and flights but used the money for herself.
“I would just like to pass on my sincere apologies to everyone,” Duke said on leaving the court.
The court heard that Odemwingie was defrauded out of £22,000 by the 38-year-old, who had run a business offering concierge services and organised holidays and trips abroad at the time of the fraud.
Judge David Mason QC accepted that Duke’s business had encountered difficulties and had not been set up or designed as a fraud from the outset.
The Nigerian striker, 32, and the six other victim’s money had been “shifted in different directions” by Duke, the judge said.
Duke was given a two-year suspended prison sentence.