On Friday night, March 10, Fluminense gave a star presentation to its new reinforcement, the award-winning left-back Marcelo, with an act at the legendary Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro, attended by thousands of tricolor fans excited about hiring one one of the best players in Brazil in recent years.
“It is the best moment of my life, I am coming home. Thank you all, I’m very, very happy, it’s the moment I’ve always dreamed of,” the 34-year-old Brazilian defender said excitedly to the twisters of the club where he trained as a professional and who dedicated numerous songs to him. “It was 17 years away from home. Today I am happy to be back and I am sure that everything will be fine. I am going to train, run and fight to give them joy, ”he added from the field, along with his wife and his two children.
The presentation, for which some of the stands sold out, included assistance from the team and a Show Musical by rapper Filipe Ret, friend of the two-time World Cup player with Brazil (2014 and 2018) and 2013 Confederations Cup champion.
Numerous fans displayed Marcelo’s face masks and wore the number 12 shirt, the same one he wore at Real Madrid, where he established himself as the player with the most titles (25), including five Champions Leagues.
The striker, one of the best in recent years, although with an uncertain present, will wear that number on his return to the team from his hometown, which he left in 2006 at the age of 18 to sign with the You meringues. After his departure from the white box, in mid-2022, he had a disappointing five-month stint at Olympiacos in Greece.
Precisely because he played at Olympiacos, with James Rodríguez, who was also a teammate of the Brazilian at Real Madrid, rumors began to emerge that the Colombian footballer could be signed by Fluminense. And although the former Bayern player is recovering his physical form to reappear in the Greek league, there is speculation that Marcelo can convince James to join the Rio de Janeiro team.
In the Brazilian team, Rodríguez would be closer to Colombia and the National Team, and in addition to playing in the Brazilian league, he could play in the Copa Libertadores de América. Something that without a doubt is very tempting for the Colombian; However, it will be necessary to see if Fluminense would be willing to pay for the signing and the salary of an expensive footballer like James.
“He won’t have players like Cristiano Ronaldo here”
The well-attended presentation was preceded by a warm welcome by dozens of twisters who received him on Thursday at Rio’s international airport. “Knowing that it would come, the fans created a positive moment that ends up being reflected in the work environment. I told him that here it will be Fluminense and not Real Madrid. Here they will not have players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Benzema,” coach Fernando Diniz told the SporTV channel that day.
“Real needs less effort to get results. Fluminense is a very supportive team. He was very open to it and he can have a lot more fun than there,” he added.
The tricolor from Rio de Janeiro will clash on Sunday with Volta Redonda, from the Brazilian third division, in the first leg of the semifinals of the Rio de Janeiro state tournament. On Wednesday they beat the mighty Flamengo 2-1 and won the Taça Guanabara, awarded to the winner of the group stage of that regional competition.
Marcelo is already enrolled in that contest. However, it is not yet clear when he will debut, because his physical condition has not been reported. His last game was with Olympiacos, on January 11, in the 2-2 draw against Atromitos Athens for the Greek cup.
*With information from AFP.