Sports

Raul Gustavo, defender of Corinthians, remembers the death of his sister and son

I returned to Limeira, stayed at Inter for another week and Corinthians called me back. I rented this apartment in São Paulo, and when I sat on this sofa here for the first time, I collapsed. All I could think about was Preta. I cried so much that I passed out and slept. I woke up feeling sick, with a headache. I remembered the funeral. I couldn’t cry that day, but I still needed to cry. It was my sister.

So I decided to make a t-shirt printed with a photo of us. I started taking her to every game, hoping that one day I could honor her. I’m a defender, it’s more difficult to score a goal, but I’ve always had that with me: ‘The day I play in this shirt, I’ll score a goal for my sister’. I put the shirt in my bag for my second game for Corinthians, against Ferroviária, for Paulista, but I forgot to deliver it to the wardrobes. They didn’t take the shirt, and it was my fault. I cried in the locker room. I thought I would play badly.

Shortly after, in the classic against Santos, in Vila Belmiro, the shirt went to me. It was when I scored my first goal for Corinthians and I was able to show Brazil, in a classic, the importance that Preta will always have in my life. I was happy, I was sad. I cried with joy and sadness. A lot of feeling and emotion that day.

What hurts me the most is not having fulfilled the dream of being at Corinthians while she was here. If I could, I would ask for just a moment with her, so that she would see me, today, living this dream, which belonged to all of us. Wherever she went, she spoke of me to whomever she knew, as if I was a player even before I was. Everyone knew who I was, because of her, who said to the four winds: ‘My brother is going to be a player’.

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