The mother of AS Roma forward Adriano has claimed her son wanted to commit suicide during the depths of his depression.
Adriano walked out of Italy a year and a half ago when an Inter Milan player, citing depression as his reason for wanting to return home to Brazil.
But after a season at Flamengo in his home city of Rio de Janeiro, the 28-year-old has come back to Italy with Roma.
And although he has visibly piled on the pounds even since his most lax days in Milan, his mother Dona Rosilda believes his new club can help him complete his recovery.
“The source of his depression has always been the death of his father which he has never overcome,” she told Thursday’s Gazzetta dello Sport.
“Due to his great success many people criticised him without really knowing what was happening to him and that sent him into a downward spiral.
“No-one knows the nature of pain more than those who are suffering from it and probably I didn’t even know how to help him.
“One day, when he was still in Italy, he rang me and said he didn’t want to go on, he wanted to stop playing football.
“He confessed that he was thinking of committing suicide and I told him to react with his heart because nothing is more important than his happiness and that if to obtain it he had to give up football, then no problem.”
Adriano left Inter and returned to the Rio slum where he was born, allegedly in search of some roots and normality to his life.
But his mother claims his acquaintances do more harm than good.
“Adriano was born and bred in the favela. His home has always been in Vila Cruzeiro and unfortunately you can’t choose your friends.
“We argued many times but now I hope he’s understood that there are many bad people there.
“People he thinks are his friends but who only want to take advantage and hurt him because they have their eyes only on money.
“I hope Adriano has learnt from terrible experiences and understood that his relationship with the favela can’t be as it was before.
“Now he’s a new person with his head on his shoulders and he told me he feels good.”
And Ms Rosilda believes that only good can come from his return to Italy.
“His return to Italy has been positive because he already knows the country, he knows what to expect,” she added.
“I know it won’t be easy but now Adriano has the strength to meet and overcome difficulties.”
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