Tottenham star Richarlison considered quitting football during depression struggles | Football

Richarlison wanted to quit football after World Cup heartbreak (Picture: Getty Images)

Richarlison has opened up about the depression he suffered after the Qatar World Cup, which led him to consider retirement from football.

The Tottenham striker was in the Brazil squad at the 2022 World Cup, where his country were beaten by Croatia in the quarter-finals.

The 26-year-old, who has 48 caps for Brazil, says the aftermath proved extremely difficult to deal with and he considered ending his career at an incredibly young age.

‘I’d just played in a World Cup, at my peak,’ he told ESPN Brasil. ‘I was reaching my limit, you know? I don’t know, I’m not going to talk about killing myself, but I was in a depression there, and I wanted to give up.

‘Even I, who seemed to be mentally strong. After the World Cup, it seemed like it all fell apart.’

Speaking about being back at Spurs, he said: ‘Before I went to training, I wanted to go home, I wanted to go back to my room because I don’t know what was going through my head.

‘I even went and told my dad I was going to give up. It’s kind of sad to talk like that. What I went through after the World Cup … To go to my father, who was the guy who chased my dream with me, and say, “Dad, I want to give up”, is crazy.’

Croatia v Brazil: Quarter Final - FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

Brazil lost on penalties to Croatia in Qatar (Picture: Getty Images)

RIcharlison has bounced back on the field, with 10 goals in 23 Premier League games this season, and has recovered mentally with the help of a therapist, who he credits for saving his life.

‘I think the therapist, like it or not, saved me, saved my life,’ he said. ‘I only thought rubbish … If you need a psychologist, look for one because it’s nice for you to open up like that, for you to be talking to the person.’

Richarlison was in the Brazil squad for the friendlies with England and Spain over the international break but did not come on in either contest as manager Dorival Junior said he was managing the striker’s return from a knee problem.

‘I didn’t go with Richarlison, who made an enormous effort to get on the pitch, but he has a natural recovery process,’ said the Brazil boss after beating England at Wembley.

‘We are taking all possible care with him so as not to worsen the situation. He is working little by little to get back into better condition , it’s still a bit of a slow process.

‘Richarlison was initially ruled out for this game, for the next game we’re going to rethink all of this, it will depend on his evolution.’


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