Former Brazil and Inter Milan striker Adriano Leite Ribeiro has opened up on his struggles with alcoholism and depression during his stint at Inter Milan.
In a recent interview with a local radio station, the 36-year-old admitted that he turned to drinking to deal with depression following the death of his father.
He disclosed that he turned up to training drunk and Inter lied to the press that he was injured.
“’Only I know how much I suffered. The death of my father left me with this huge void, I felt very lonely. After his death everything got worse, because I isolated myself.
‘I was alone in Italy, sad and depressed, and then I started drinking. I only felt happy when I was drinking, I’d do it every night. I drank everything I could get my hands on: wine, whisky, vodka, beer. Lots of beer.
‘I didn’t stop drinking and in the end I had to leave Inter.’
Once regarded as one of the world’s top strikers, Adriano’s career took a nose dive and his scoring record for the Italian side dramatically dipped during the 2006-07 campaign and was subsequently loaned to Sao Paulo and spent the remaining part of his active days in his native Brazil.
He admits that returning home revived his career even though it cost him millions.
“I didn’t know how to hide it, I arrived drunk in the morning for training sessions. I always showed up, even if I was completely drunk and the medical staff had to take me to sleep in the infirmary.
‘Inter told the press I just had muscular problems.
‘I later realised that the problem was the people around me, friends who did nothing but take me to parties with women and alcohol, without thinking about anything.
‘By going back to Brazil I gave up millions, but I gained happiness.’
2000-01 – Flamengo
2001-02 – Inter Milan
2002 – Fiorentina (loan)
2002-04 – Parma
2004-09 – Inter Milan
2008 – São Paulo (loan)
2009-10 – Flamengo
2010-11 – Roma
2011-12 – Corinthians
2012 – Flamengo
2014 – Atlético Paranaense
2016 – Miami United
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