Michael Branch, an ex-Everton and Wolves player, jailed

Michael Branch
Image caption Clubs Branch played for include Everton, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Bradford City.

Former Everton and Wolves player Michael Branch has been sentenced to seven years in jail, after pleading guilty to drugs offences.

Branch, 34, admitted charges of possession with intent to supply class A and class B drugs at Chester Crown Court.

One charge related to the seizure of 1kg of cocaine from his home address in Otterspool, Liverpool in July.

Branch first played for Everton's first team in 1996 when he was 18.

A second charge related to the handover of just under 3kg of amphetamine to another man in a Liverpool car park in March.

He was arrested on 10 July and was sentenced on Thursday.

Matt Burton, from the Serious Organised Crime Agency, said: "This was significant criminality committed by someone who would once have been viewed as a role model.

"The message here is that entering the illegal drugs trade is a route to prison, not to financial gain and a celebrity lifestyle."

Branch also played for Bradford City and Chester City as well as having loan spells at Manchester City, Reading and Hull City.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites