PHOTOS: Brazil Legend Adriano Shows How Mental Health Issues Can Destroy a Career

Former Internazionale striker Adriano has shown his 1.3m Instagram followers just how much of a fall​ from grace he has suffered through depression, with a series of photos posted onto his account in recent days.

Serie A in the mid-2000s was at his mercy, and the rest of the world was at his feet. Adriano had become one of the most lethal strikers around Europe, and from a young age was quickly proving to everyone just how lethal his devastating finishing ability was.

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Containing a mixture of Roberto Carlos’ left foot and Ronaldo’s destructive movement caused defenders to quake in their boots at the mere sight of Adriano, and the forward embodied power and tenacity – proving hugely popular with Inter fans.

However, it all came crashing down upon him following the death of Adriano’s father. His passing resulted in the promising striker to tumble into alcoholism, sending him into a void of depression – reminding the world that footballers are real people too.

“Only I know how much I suffered.” The forward said when opening up to R7 (via the Sun)

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“The death of my father left a huge hole. I felt alone and I isolated myself when he died. I was sad and depressed in Italy, and that was when I started to drink.”

It resulted in Adriano moving back to Brazil in 2007 – never living up to his unbelievable potential. A decade later, he’s shown how much his life has changed; having previously been spotted holding an assault rifle in a favela in Rio.

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​​​​Adriano’s struggles are epitomised by the moving words from his former teammate, Javier Zanetti.

​​If there is one saving grace, it’s that Adriano now finally seems to be at peace with everything he’s been through in the last ten years.

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Picking the Best Potential Inter Lineup to Face ​Crotone on Saturday

​Inter make the trip to a struggling Crotone on Saturday in a bid to continue their impressive start to the Serie A season under manager Luciano Spalletti.

The Nerazzurri boast a perfect record in their opening three games, having won every match by a two goal margin and with Crotone failing to score in any of their games thus far, it could be a question of how many Inter can rack up on the road as they look to maintain their place at the top of the table. 

Inter are expected to have a comfortable day on Saturday, and here’s how they could lineup:

Goalkeeper

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Samir Handanović is the undisputed starting keeper at Inter and that is not expected to be any different on Saturday. 

Defence

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  • Miranda

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​With only one goal conceded in the opening three games, Spalletti is likely to keep his back-line consistent by naming the same players who shutout SPAL last week.

They will seemingly be set for a comfortable afternoon as Crotone are yet to score this season, however the home side have recent history to look back on for encouragement as their 2-1 win last season could yet offer Inter something to think about. 

Midfield

​A solid midfield which possesses the ability to attack and defend as a unit has been instrumental in Inter’s impressive start to the season, and don’t expect that to change on Saturday.   

Although not one to grab the headlines, expect Borja Valero to run the game on Saturday after making an immediate impression in his first season with Inter which has seen him quickly become a linchpin in Spalletti’s set-up. 

Forwards

  • Icardi

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Mauro Icardi is seemingly scoring goals for fun and is likely to smell blood against a Crotone side who sit in the bottom three of the table, and with Inter running like a well oiled machine so far this season the Argentinian could very well see his season tally of five goals receive a serious top-up on Saturday. 

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Barcelona Flop Paco Alcacer Emerges as Reported January Target for Serie A Pair

Barcelona forward Paco Alcacer is reportedly of interest to Serie A pair Napoli and Inter Milan as they each consider strengthening their respective squads when the transfer window re-opens midway through the season in January.

Catalan publication Sport describe Alcacer as being ‘followed very closely’ by Napoli and Inter.

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It is said that the 24-year-old, who scored only six La Liga goals last season following a high profile €30m move from Valencia, is not part of coach Ernesto Valverde’s plans.

He started the opening game of the season as a result of Luis Suarez’s enforced absence through injury, but was a second half substitute on matchday two and was unused last time out. Alcacer was then left out of the squad altogether against Juventus in midweek after a bout of flu.

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With chances likely to be few and far between to play at Barça this season, Napoli and Inter are tipped to make their respective moves if he continues to be just a stand-in.

Alcacer isn’t expected to be a starter at either Napoli or Inter, but would offer strength in depth to both squads. He may also feel the path to a starting place is less difficult than at Camp Nou.

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Liverpool Prepared to Give Up Chase to Sign Virgil van Dijk and Pursue Fellow Dutch Defensive Star

​Having hit a brick wall in their pursuit of Southampton defensive rock Virgil van Dijk in the summer transfer window, Liverpool are believed to be prepared to drop their interest in the defender and pursue a move for fellow Dutch international Stefan de Vrij. Reds boss Jürgen Klopp is believed to be eager to bolster his defensive line in January, with de Vrij a key target.

As reported by Italian football website Calciomercato, via the Mirror, the Reds will look to battle Serie A giants Juventus and Inter Milan in their pursuit of the highly-rated 25-year-old. 

Juventus are looking to fill the void left by legendary Italian defender Leonardo Bonucci, who joined big-spending sleeping giants AC Milan in arguably the best coup of the summer transfer window.

The former Feyenoord star has enhanced his reputation considerably during his three year spell with I Biancocelesti, and Liverpool are believed to be prepared to give up their attempts to sign van Dijk as de Vrij represents a better value, and a more realistic prospect. The defensive worries of the Reds were highlighted in Tuesday night’s 2-2 Champions League draw with Sevilla.


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Liverpool are widely believed to be one of the best attacking forces in the Premier League, with the likes of Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané at the forefront of the side’s attacking endeavours in their clashes so far this season. 

However, a shaky defence cannot be ignored, and Klopp will be determined to strengthen his central defence in the January window.

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Liverpool Set to Battle With Serie A’s Top Sides to Sign Highly-Rated Fiorentina Prodigy

​Liverpool are believed to be hot on the trail of Fiorentina’s burgeoning young talent Federico Chiesa. 

19-year-old Chiesa – the son of former Italian international Enricio Chiesa – has been lighting up Serie A with his displays for Viola so far this season, and has eight U-21 caps for Italy to his name already.

As reported by Italian football website Calciomercato, Liverpool will face stiff competition in their pursuit of the prodigious youngster, with Inter and Napoli believed to be hellbent on signing the versatile forward.

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Fiorentina are well aware of the potential ability possessed by Chiesa, and are unlikely to accept any less than €40m for the player.

Liverpool would do well to tempt Chiesa in a move to the Premier League, given the glowing reputation he has earned thus far in Italy during the early stages in his career. 

A move to Inter seems the most likely destination for the young forward, but Fiorentina boss Stefano Pioli will be desperate to keep the player with the club for as long as possible.


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Chiesa has shown himself to be a fast, versatile and skilful player during his early days at Fiorentina – being utilised as a winger, but with the ability to lead the line when required. 

The forward shone in his side’s 5-0 away thrashing of Verona last weekend, proving a constant thorn in his opponents’ side, showcasing relentless pace and energy with dazzling forward runs.

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Agent of Uruguay Starlet Dubbed the ‘Next Casemiro’ Confirms Talks with Inter

​Uruguayan U-20s international Carlos Benavidez has been in discussions with Internazionale over a potential move to the Italian giants, according to reports.

Hailed for his performances in central midfield during Uruguay’s run to the U-20s World Cup semi-finals last year, Benavidez has attracted attention from a host of European clubs. 

Currently plying his trade for Defensor Sporting in his homeland’s top division, the 19-year-old has been linked with Benfica, Genoa and Fiorentina as well as attracting the eye of Inter and a host of other clubs.

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Benevidez’s agent, Javier Hernandez spoke about links to Luciano Spaletti’s side, courtesy of ​CalcioMercato.

He said: “We did not speak directly with Inter but with some intermediaries. It would be an honor to dress the shirt of an important club like the Nerazzurri. Let’s see what’s going on. 

“We’ve been offered by clubs in Spain and England, what I can say is that we will choose the best.”

The 19-year-old already has honours to his name with a winners medal from the 2017 South American Championships with his national side, the midfielder has continued to impress on the big stage in the last couple of years.


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His playing style is likened to that of Real Madrid’s midfield anchor Casemiro, with great passing ability and an ability to control the game from a deeper midfield role Benevidez will be hoping a big move to Europe would bring similar reward.

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Inter Open New Contract Talks With Mauro Icardi to Ward Off Predators From Low Release Clause

After seeing player prices skyrocket this summer, Internazionale are desperate to tie star striker Mauro Icardi down to a new long-term contract.

24-year-old Icardi is undoubtedly one of the most talented strikers in world football, averaging a goal every 53 minutes this season and scoring 24 times in Serie A last season.

According to Premium Sport (via Football Italia) the Nerazzuri are keen to renew their key man’s contract and increase his buyout claise, which stands at a tempting €110m.

Icardi signed a new deal with Inter just last October, despite a public falling out with the sections of the club’s fans. Back then, a clause of €110m was inserted into the deal – which (in 2016) would have meant only a world-record bid could see him switch clubs.

However, Paris Saint-Germain changed the transfer market forever this summer after paying €222m for Barcelona star Neymar, as well as agreeing to a deal in principle with AS Monaco for the permanent transfer (expected to be €180m) of Kylian Mbappé next summer.

Inter’s hierarchy are now keen to raise the Argentine striker’s release clause to above €200m, while also giving Icardi a healthy raise to a salary of around €4.5m per season.


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The Sampdoria striker has started this season on fire under new manager Luciano Spalletti, scoring five times in just three games – including doubles against Fiorentina and title rivals Roma.

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Southampton Chief Reveals Saints Had Bid Accepted by Inter for Liverpool Star Philippe Coutinho

​Southampton had a €12m bid for Philippe Coutinho accepted in 2012, according to former Saints executive chairman Nicola Cortese.

Coutinho, who was then playing for Inter Milan, joined Liverpool a year later and has become one of the best players in the Premier League, attracting interest from Barcelona over the summer.

However, Cortese told Jim White that the south coast club had an offer accepted for the Brazilian, but the deal ultimately failed to be completed.

With Coutinho presumingly rejecting the chance to sign for Southampton, the club proceeded to sign Jay Rodriguez, Gaston Ramirez and Steven Davis over the next year or so.

Liverpool FC v Leicester City FC: Premier League Asia Trophy

Southampton have signed a number of players Liverpool have then gone on to purchase, with Nathaniel Clyne, Dejan Lovren, Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana all swapping St Mary’s for Anfield in recent years.

The Reds could have looked to sign Coutinho had he impressed at Southampton, but instead bought the 25-year-old for £8.5m in 2013.

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Coutinho has since gone on to be a hit on Merseyside, scoring 42 goals in 182 appearances for Jurgen Klopp’s side.

His form attracted interest from Barcelona during the summer and Coutinho was eager to leave Liverpool, handing in a transfer request as the Premier League side rejected three bids from the Catalan giants.

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Coutinho missed the 5-0 defeat at Manchester City on Saturday, but has been included in Liverpool’s Champions League squad, with Klopp eager to reintegrate the former Espanyol midfielder as soon as possible.

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Gonzalo Higuain Names His Choice in GOAT Debate & Addresses ‘Bottler’ Criticisms

Juventus striker Gonzalo Higuain has named Brazilian icon Ronaldo as ‘the best ever’, and admits to having spent hours watching the former PSV Eindhoven, Barcelona, Internazionale and Real Madrid phenomenon at work on old VHS tapes when he was growing up in Argentina.

Higuain was a teammate of Cristiano Ronaldo’s at Real Madrid and an international colleague of Lionel Messi at international, yet ‘R9’ Ronaldo is the only one for him in the GOATdebate.

“I’ve watched two million of his goals. For me, he’s the best ever, by a big margin,” Higuain explained in an interview with The Guardian.

Ronaldo of Inter

As for the key to his own goalscoring prowess, Higuain commented, “For me, it’s about always having the image of the goal in my mind. That’s fundamental, I think.”

After leaving Real Madrid in 2013, where he had scored a very impressive 110 goals in his final five seasons after arriving from River Plate as an unproven youngster, Higuain has established himself as one of the most feared and prolific strikers in Europe.

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His goal tally improved year on year at Napoli, culminating in a haul of 36 in the league in 2015/16 to equal an 87-year-old Serie A record. He scored 32 in all competitions during his debut season at Juventus after a €90m move and has already found the net twice in 2017/18.

Higuain has acquired a reputation in the eyes of some as a ‘bottler’, though. He has played in a World Cup final, two Copa America finals and a Champions League final for club and country since 2014, and has missed several high profile chances that could have changed history.

The player himself does not see himself as cursed, or not having the mental strength to cope on the biggest of stages. Instead, he places a great deal of emphasis on just reaching that stage.

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“I always believe that it’s beautiful to win important matches, but it’s also very important simply to reach those moments. I truly believe that. Juve have played two Champions League finals in three years. That is very difficult to do,” he explained.

And when it comes to the critics who point out his flaws, Higuain has little time, explaining, “My philosophy for football is to be happy with what you’re doing.

“Pay attention to people who want good things for you: to your team‑mates, to the staff – if my father, or my manager, or my club’s president says something that interests me. Not someone who does not know me and is not saying these things to help me get better.”

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PHOTO: Inter Release Stylish New 3rd Kit for the Current Season

Inter Milan have released their brand new third kit for the season.

The Italian side, who have kicked their latest campaign ​off with three wins from three, and are looking to get back to the top of the Serie A standings, having fallen short of the mark in recent years.

And on Monday, they released images of their novel third strip, which will be available to fans on select websites as well as their official store.

The announcement on their official website reads: “The new FC Internazionale Milano third kit is an eye-catching, original design that offers the best in contemporary detailing and style whilst using cutting edge Aeroswift technology for this most modern of kits.

“This new innovative and modern kit perfectly represents FC Internazionale Milano’s traditions and style.


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“The new third kit will be worn by the players during the away match on September 16th and it will available from September 12th on nike.com, store.inter.it and the major authorized dealers.” 

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