Santos has suspended his former contract Brazil international attacker Robinho, the club announced on Friday.
Robinho, 36, rejoined Santos for a third stint this week, signing a five-month contract with the Sao Paulo side. However, the deal was met with public outcry in Brazil, stemming from a 2017 sentence for the former AC Milan and Manchester City involvement of a man in the rape of a 22 year old woman in a nightclub.
“Santos Football Club and Robinho, by mutual consent, have decided to suspend the contract signed on October 10 in order for the player to concentrate exclusively on his defense in the ongoing case in Italy,” the club said in a statement.
Robinho confirmed the news on Instagram, saying: “It is true, with a lot of sadness in my heart, I have come to tell you that I made a decision together with [Santos] president to suspend my contract at this difficult time in my life. “
“My goal has always been to help Santos Football Club, and if I get in the way, I better go and focus on my personal problems. [Santos] fans, those who love me, I will prove my innocence to you. “
On Thursday, Brazilian orthodontic franchise Orthopride announced it was ending its sponsorship deal with the Sao Paulo giant “in honor of women,” and said the company had not been notified before Robinho was signed.
Robinho, who is a free agent, has signed a five-month contract with Santos that will pay him $ 271 (R $ 1,500) a month, which is slightly above Brazil’s minimum wage.
He last played for Turkish club Istanbul Basaksehir, helping them win their first Super Lig title last season.
Robinho rose to fame after making his professional debut as a teenager with Santos in 2002. He’s been playing for it ever since Real Madrid, Guangzhou Evergrande and Atletico Mineiro, among other clubs.
He won two national championships, two Paulista tournaments and the Brazilian Cup in his previous two seasons with Santos.
At international level, Robinho earned 100 caps for Brazil, scoring 28 goals. He participated in two World Cups for the five-time world champion.
Former Manchester City go on Robinho has signed a five month contract with the former club Santos and will earn $ 271 (R $ 1,500) a month which is slightly above the state minimum wage.
The 36-year-old has returned to join his childhood club for a third stint as a free agent, having left the Turkish team Istanbul Basaksehir shortly after helping them win their first Super Lig title last season.
“I am good physically and mentally, obviously there is still a bit of rhythm [missing], but over time we will evolve gradually. “
Robinho, who rose to fame after making his professional debut with Santos in 2002, then played for it Real Madrid, City and AC Milan, among other clubs.
He won two national championships, two Paulista tournaments and the Brazilian Cup in his previous two seasons with Santos.
“I have lots of good memories here,” added Robinho. “The fans can be sure that I will do my best to help Santos FC on and off the pitch.
Santos FC is going through tough financial times. So it is time for those who can do something. I want to help a club that always gives me everything. Santos FC has done a lot for me and these returns are still small. . “
Santos is currently experiencing financial difficulties and could soon face a transfer ban from FIFA due to outstanding debts.
Chilean club Huachipato is suing Santos for completing a $ 3.4 million deal for the signing of Venezuelan striker Jefferson Soteldo, while Colombian side Atletico Nacional claim they still owe $ 774,000 from the sale of defender Felipe Aguilar.
Victims of the Brazilian coronavirus increased alarmingly, with Tuesday the first day of a total of 24 hours reaching 1,000, adding to the national number approaching 18,000 and increasing pressure on the health system, with Some cities are close to buckling. Only the United States and Russia have more confirmed COVID-19 cases than Brazil.
But even when the number grows in the middle pandemic“There is still a desire in some quarters for football to return, with President Jair Bolsonaro not keeping his desire to see the Brazilian national game run and walk as soon as possible:” If it depends on my voice, I will agree, “he said as far as April 27.
Bolsonaro is a critic of the social distance protocol imposed by governors in many 27 Brazilian states, and his government has part with two ministers of health – one was fired and the other resigned – not the least because they supported these actions and the temporary closure of commercial activities that were not important.
And so it is also with Bolsonaro that a pair of giant Rio de Janeiro are looking for in their efforts to restart training. Tuesday sees the president and director of leading national and continental champions Flamengo and their historic rivals, Vasco da Gama, met with Bolsonaro in Brasilia for what was called an informal lunch.
The long-term agenda is to discuss how and when football will start again. This has a number of complications, such as the Brazilian federal structure that gives the governor the power of the state to determine whether a game – or even proper training – can take place.
Moreover, there is the complexity of the country’s soccer calendar. The first few months of this year were given to the state championship, after the four-tier national championship began. It was quite difficult to enter the match, and a pandemic made everything impossible.
When the coronavirus pause began in mid-March, the state championship moved towards a climax. Should they finish? The national league should be running now, so that further delays will make it difficult to see how everything can be crammed. As a fan, Bolsonaro may have his own opinions, but he has no decision-making authority.
The more urgent purpose of Tuesday’s meeting was to seek help so the club could train in the capital; Rio’s soccer federation allowed the resumption of training a few weeks ago, but was immediately rejected by the local government.
Brasilia has offered its services: Mane Garrincha Stadium was built for the 2014 World Cup and is the most expensive of all venues, but has been underused since the tournament. After receiving offers from local authorities, Flamengo and Vasco are considering taking players, coaches and their families around 600 miles northwest.
After that meeting, Bolsonaro said“They want to return to playing football. I spoke with the minister of health to have a protocol to reopen. Starting without anyone in the stands,” Flamengo medical director Marcio Tannure stated via social media, “Today we took a small step, but that could signal a big step for us to return! We continue to work … “
On Wednesday, the Globo TV helicopter saw the players train at the Flamengo facility, the Vulture’s Nest, but while the two giants were looking at one direction, fellow Rio power plant Fluminense and Botafogo refute the idea, with Botafogo very loud.
Carlos Augusto Montenegro is a former club president who remains on Botafogo’s board of directors, and he did not pull a punch in an interview with Globo Esporte, describing the proposed project as a “cowardly act.”
“Clubs must be big on and off the pitch,” Montenegro said. “This is the attitude of the small team. People will come to training and can leave the contaminated. This can be an act of murder that forces the situation in this way. Who will be responsible if the athlete or club employee sends the virus to a family member or someone at home? Botafogo’s position is that we will not play. “
The recent death of coronavirus Jorginho, a Flamengo massage specialist since 1980 and a member of Brazil’s backroom team at the 2002 World Cup, is a strong reminder of the threat of the virus, and it would be strange if there were no doubts among players about the dangers of premature returns.
Earlier this month, in a video featuring players from a number of leading clubs voicing their concern that steps to restarting the game might be made too soon, Flamengo Diego said, “This is a time for unity,” while team mates Everton Ribeiro stressed the need for “safe working conditions.”
It is unclear how many Flamengo and Vasco players have reservations and if there is agreement with Montenegro – and whether they might think it wise to keep such a view for themselves, given that going public with such an opinion might not please their club.
On March 12, Brazil’s toughest rivals Internacional and Gremio played the last big game in front of the crowd at the Copa Libertadores before the coronavirus imposed a shutdown.
This week, rivals Porto Alegre will become the first major Brazilian club to continue training – Inter on Tuesday, and Gremio will start the next day. There is still no definite idea when football will resume. One thing is certain, the only strong idea at the moment is that the subject will be controversial.
Number of deaths from coronavirus in Indonesia Brazil has risen to nearly 7,500, with specialists expecting a peak to occur over the next two months. Meanwhile, neighboring countries that suffer less become more cautious. In ArgentinaFor example, December is now seen as the most likely month to restart football, while Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro has made no secret of his desire for the game to return sooner than later. His new health minister, Nelson Teich, has been debating the idea with the football authorities, some of whom are also interested in starting over quickly. Bolsonaro believes that there is little risk, because the players are young and healthy athletes.
But what about the players? Brazil has a little history of football militancy, but under the umbrella of the National Federation of Professional Athletes (FENAPAF), an athlete union, a group of famous players issued a video statement. Sixteen players from 12 leading clubs read the statement, each speaking one line. The names include Diego and Everton Ribeiro of Flamengo, Corinthians goalkeeper Cassio and Felipe Melo from Palmeiras. Almost all the big clubs from the main centers of Rio, Sao Paulo and Belo Horizonte are represented, although there is no one from Porto Alegre.
Diego began, stating that “this is a time for unity.” The players stressed that they love football and are eager to return, but, as veteran guard Atletico Mineiro Victor said, “we must think about everyone’s health.” Indeed, the fact that president Bolsonaro saw the risks for the players as “very small” was neither here nor there. The problem is that those with whom they – and others involved in the spectacle – come in contact with. Everton Ribeiro stressed the need for “safe working conditions,” before Felipe Melo – a player who often voiced his support for Bolsonaro – closed the statement with a declaration that “together we will win this match.”
The use of Felipe Melo to close the video is clear evidence of a peaceful tone. There is no general desire for conflict with the Brazilian president, who continues to enjoy a lot of support from the Brazilian football community. And there are other areas where the video steps on eggshells.
All of these players are well-known, their texts recognize that most Brazilian soccer players earn little, and many have a professional calendar that lasts three of four months a year. The economic pressure on these players is far greater than the pressure on much better elite club stars. In fact, the longer the shutdown lasts, the more likely a number of clubs are no longer eligible as professional players.
But the need for caution has been highlighted this week. Among those who lost their lives due to the corona virus is Jorginho, a massage specialist with Flamengo since 1980 and part of the Brazilian support staff for their 2002 World Cup victory.
The news came as a jolt of hopes to restart quickly in Rio de Janeiro – a recovery that has been strongly opposed by Botafogo, one of Flamengo’s main rivals. Botafogo director Carlos Augusto Montenegro explained that his team would not return to action anytime soon and would be happy to pay a penalty. “Every point taken from us will save lives,” he added.
The Rio soccer federation has just allowed the return of training, but was stopped by the local government – in Brazil, the local government is upholding social distance while the Bolsonaro central government questions the consequences.
For now, there are many forces moving in different directions. But the show cannot take place without the players – and this week, Brazilian soccer players have shown that they are worried about the possibility of a resumption of the game prematurely.