By Chris Wright
Corinthians have announced that they have terminated and torn up Adriano’s contract after giving up on ever rescuing the wayward Brazilian from his ongoing career funk – with imminent retirement looking like a very real prospect for the former Inter Milan battering ram.
After being jettisoned by Roma last March after a fractious 10-month stint in the Italian capital, Adriano returned home to Brazil proclaiming that he would put his heart and soul into regaining his place in the national side for the 2014 World Cup, but suffered a fairly serious Achilles injury just days after resuming training and spent six months on the sidelines before making his debut in October – after which he only made six further appearances, scoring two goals.
Reports from Brazil are suggesting that the decision was made after Adriano failed to report for training two days on the spin and then refused to let the Corinthians doctor weigh him once he finally sauntered into the club’s training facilities.
The 30-year old had been staying in a private health club at Corinthian’s expense to help him shed weight (he apparently last clocked in at a burly 15st 10lbs), but has now severed all ties with the club, despite his contract running up until the summer.
Neto, once of Corinthians and now a preeminent commentator in Brazil, summed up Adriano’s stint at his former club in withering terms:
“Myself, many other analysts and the entire Corinthians support had a real desire to see him do well, but the reality is that this guy is not professional.
“He never made even the slightest effort to work hard and secure his future. Only a madman would sign him now.”
Just let that last remark ring for a second. So grim, so fatalistic, and so sad to see a player whose only mode was ‘Beast Mode’ back in his pomp fall from grace in such a submissive fashion, without so much as a whimper of defiance – though, considering his lapse conduct since 2005, it hardly comes as a shock.
Depression, blubber, injuries and drink have all no doubt taken their toll – but it’s that unwillingness, that sheer lack of resolve that finally signaled the death knell.
So, as Adriano re-re-enters the wilderness and stares over the precipice into the void of retirement, let us all fondly remember the very reason why his passing over into footballing limbo represents such a pitiful waste of cathartic power, bustling skill and barely-bridled aggression…
Farewell Adriano, we hardly knew ye.