Valdivia throws a grenade

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Silent in the press ever since the latest round of transfer rumours in mid July, Palmeiras’ Chilean midfielder Valdivia the other day decided he had enough. Constantly the target of speculations of the most variable kind – not least in regard to his character, the true extension of his injuries and so forth –  the straw that apparently broke the camel’s back came from football commentator, blogger and ex-Corinthians midfielder Neto – a well known anti-palmeirense – dedicating an exclusive post to Valdivia’s do’s and don’ts. Valdivia wrote an open letter, then yesterday made an interview for the Lance! football magazine. Below, selected highlights with comments (in red). I’ve not bothered much with the tirade against Neto: he deserves as little attention as possible as it is.

“Enough being hit over and over again and remain silent” – wish our directors felt the same way…

“Due to everything I’ve been through (reference to the express kidnapping incident), I’m the one who respects Palmeiras the most; anybody else would just have packed his bags and left” – thanks for sticking with us Valdivia, but it’s not like you have that many options, unless you want to cough up a VERY large sum for breaching a contract with the club that feeds you checks every month

“Anyone who questions my medical status is also questioning the professionals at Palmeiras, the medical department” – good one: Valdivia’s right in defending the club and our staff

“The supporters recognise my efforts” – some do, increasing numbers don’t…

“I’m no liar but no saint either. I received a very good offer (from the Arab world). I told them how much I wanted. But Palmeiras demanded guarantees from the team and they didn’t provide them, so I stayed” – crystal clear: faced with an option of making lots more money and staying together with his family, Valdivia was ready to leave. Can’t really blame him, can we?

“If I’m to leave, I’m not leaving for another Brazilian club” – a rather bold statement and for sure a promise that supporters will remember

“I’ve requested a new set of exercises and will be working out in two periods every day, aiming at a comeback on Wednesday” – which would be against Flamengo

“What happened (again, the kidnapping) was an accident, a disgrace. She (the missus) coming back or not, will not depend on Palmeiras. We’ve talked, she’s calmer now, my kids want to come back, they miss their friends at school” – in the long run, the family’s well-being is fundamental for any person’s piece of mind. A permanent family reunion in São Paulo is the best solution, period

“I’ll ask the directors to play at the Pacaembu. If that’s what the supporters want, then that’s what I want. We’ve won and lost at the Barueri. Palmeiras have been champion many a times at the Pacaembu” – clever move or straight from the heart? Doesn’t really matter: he’s right either way

“I was released from my duties last week to go to Chile see my family, but I turned the offer down not to feed the critics even more. Felipão has released my twice, our relation is excellent and he praises my football” – if they in fact get along – and Scolari’s not an easy man to please – there’s still hope. Let’s make that transcend onto the pitch, gentlemen.

Avanti Palestra!
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