Zanetti: Adriano my biggest defeat

Inter legend Javier Zanetti has confessed that “not pulling Adriano out of the tunnel of depression” was his biggest defeat in football.

Adriano was considered one of the world’s best players in the mid-2000s, when he was playing for Inter alongside Zanetti, until the death of his father saw the Brazilian striker fall into depression and alcoholism.

“When he scored that goal at Real Madrid, I said to myself that we’d found the new Ronaldo,” he told Tuttomercatoweb.

Inter legend Javier Zanetti has confessed that “not pulling Adriano out of the tunnel of depression” was his biggest defeat in football.

Adriano was considered one of the world’s best players in the mid-2000s, when he was playing for Inter alongside Zanetti, until the death of his father saw the Brazilian striker fall into depression and alcoholism.

“When he scored that goal at Real Madrid, I said to myself that we’d found the new Ronaldo,” he told Tuttomercatoweb.

“But he came from the favelas, which frightened me because I saw how dangerous it was there, and when you become rich from nothing, everything becomes more insidious.

“When he had the phone call about the death of his father, we were in the room.

“He thumped the phone [back on the hook] and began screaming in a way that one can’t imagine. It still shivers me today.

“From that day, Massimo Moratti and I treated him as a younger brother.

“He continued to play football, scoring and dedicating his goals to his father by pointing to the sky. But after that phone call, nothing was the same as before.

“One night, Ivan Cordoba shared a room with him and told him he was a mix between Ronaldo and Zlatan Ibrahimovic and asked him if he was aware that he would become the world’s best.

“We weren’t able to pull him out of the tunnel of depression. That was my biggest defeat, I felt powerless.”

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