After agreeing to terminate his contract with Corinthians, midfielder Willian gave an exclusive interview to my wheel. The now ex-number 10 of the team explained the decision to leave the club and told the backstory of the farewell to CT Joaquim Grava.
Willian received the report at the house where he lives with his family in São Paulo. The player confirmed that his choice to leave Corinthians was due to threats directed at his family and that the decision was made more than a month ago.
“I am grateful for the opportunity to have this space to communicate with Corinthians fans. A fan who has always supported me, treated me with great affection, with great respect. I know that the reason for my departure is not for everyone, but for the minority, which ends up making a much bigger impact. My departure is due to threats to my family on social media, verbal abuse. I decided to terminate my contract for this. This decision was made more than a month ago, suddenly if I passed (to the Libertadores semifinals), I would leave the same way.“, detailed the player.
“It is a sadness to have to leave the club in this way for these reasons. I come back with goals, dream of winning titles. I’ve always been loyal to the club, to my teammates, but I have to be loyal to my family as well. There’s a sadness, but that’s what I had to do. There was no other solution but this. Even after those two BOs, whenever I lost a game or played a bad game, the same thing happened. They started going to my father, my sister. It ended up making me sad and I didn’t want my family to go through that as a result of me in my professional life,” he added.
Willian returned to Corinthians after 14 years in European football on August 30, 2021. Close to completing one year at the club, the midfielder saw, last June, he and his family receive threats of various types due to their performance within field. One of the suspects was even arrested by the police.
“I knew about the charge that exists in Brazil. When the guy is not doing well, criticism is always welcome in our profession. But when it comes to threats, verbal attacks on social networks, directed at my family, the scenario changes. I knew the calendar was full, travel. In the beginning, I even adapted with the heat, there was a long time that I didn’t even play in the heat, at the beginning it was kind of difficult “, he said.
“But I knew that, that my social life was going to change a lot, we were going to completely change from the life we used to live abroad, to live here in Brazil. I knew all that. I didn’t imagine being threatened after losing a game or playing badly, having the family threatened, I really didn’t imagine that. Demanding is part of it, criticism is part. He didn’t play well and being criticized, that’s part of it. But being threatened, being insulted on social media, it really ended up saddening me family and ends up causing a lot of emotional damage too”, added Willian.
The former number 10 shirt and child of the Corinthians base said goodbye to his teammates this Thursday. Willian revealed that the Corinthians players were upset by the departure, but they understood the athlete’s motives – as well as the board.
“They (board) understood. They understood the situation, many fans understood that it was mimimi, that I was making a lame excuse to leave. I would never do that, even for everything I gave up. It is a serious situation, it ends up mentally affecting the family, it ends up causing great damage to the family, in my daughters. I ended up informing President Duilio that I wanted to leave and we agreed on that”, said the athlete.
“It was peaceful (the group’s farewell). Of course, we were all sad there, because they wanted me to stay, but they understood my side, my position. But really everyone wanted me to stay, Corinthians has everything to end the year well, with a title, there’s a Brazilian, there’s a Copa do Brasil that you can reverse the situation. So I think that way, everyone wanted me to stay, but they understood my side and my position”, he added.
Willian did not fail to send a message to the Corinthians fans. The player said he was grateful to Fiel for all the support since his return to the club and apologized for not being the Willian that, in his words, “everyone expected”.
“To express gratitude for Corinthians fans, to Fiel Torcida. All the fans who have supported me since my arrival at the club have always treated me with great respect and affection. I think that’s it, I apologize if I wasn’t that Willian that everyone expected to score a lot of goals, give a lot of assists, but one thing I can say is that I never lacked the will to run, the will to win, the will to do the best for the club . So, really expressing gratitude for the fans, for everything they did for me”, concluded Willian.
Willian leaves Corinthians in his second spell with 45 games played and a goal scored. If considering the athlete’s first spell at the club, the player has collected 86 games and three goals scored.
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