Richarlison considered quitting football during post-World Cup depression

by 24britishtvMarch 28, 2024, 7 a.m. 18
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The Brazil forward Richarlison has revealed he endured depression after his country’s quarter-final loss to Croatia at the 2022 World Cup and considered quitting football.

Richarlison, who plays for Tottenham, said in September he would seek psychological help after he was photographed crying on the bench when he was substituted during Brazil’s 5-1 thrashing of Bolivia in a 2026 World Cup qualifier. The 26-year-old, capped 48 times, has urged players to seek help for their mental health.

“I’d just played in a World Cup, at my peak,” Richarlison 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.”

After initial struggles at Spurs, who he joined from Everton in 2022, Richarlison has scored 11 goals in 26 appearances this season. “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,” he said. “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.”

He said going to therapy was the best decision he has made. “I think the therapist, like it or not, saved me, saved my life,” Richarlison added. “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.”
• None In the UK and Ireland, Samaritans can be contacted on freephone 116 123, or email [email protected] or [email protected]. In the US, you can call or text the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline on 988, chat on 988lifeline.org, or text HOME to 741741 to connect with a crisis counselor. In Australia, the crisis support service Lifeline is 13 11 14. Other international helplines can be found at befrienders.org

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