(Then24.com/AFP) Brazilian midfielder Lucas Leiva36 years old and currently at the Gremio de Porto Alegre, announced this Friday his retirement from soccer due to a heart problem that had sidelined him from the fields since December.
“It has been a difficult period, I think it is the first time I have cried for this situation. But all that remains is for me to thank, I only have gratitude for my career”, the former ‘Seleção’ player said through tears at a press conference in Porto Alegre.
Leiva had been away from soccer activities since December, when in the routine examinations of preseason a myocardial fibrosis was detected.
After a forced three-month hiatus, the specialists did a battery of tests on him and concluded that “he should not continue with high-performance activities because it could bring serious risks to his health,” explained Márcio Dornelles, a doctor from the Guild.
“I had high hopes that the situation would be reversed, but it did not. My health comes first, ”said the now ex-soccer player, who played his last game last November.
O bom filho à casa torna e asim ele fez. He started his career here, became an idol, won the world and came back at a difficult time to join the unionist nation. And so he will remain, acting for two gramados. Obliged by you, @LucasLeiva87! Let’s go for more! pic.twitter.com/ULas6aeB6J
— Guild FBPA (@Gremio) March 17, 2023
Formed in the ‘gaúcho tricolor’ youth academy, where he made his professional debut in 2005, Lucas Leiva spent most of his career at Liverpool (2007-17) and Lazio (2017-22).
With the English he won the 2012 League Cup and with Lazio, the Italian Super Cups in 2017 and 2019, the year in which he also won the local Cup.
With the Brazilian team, meanwhile, he won bronze at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and He played the South American qualifiers for the World Cup in South Africa-2010 and the Copa América-2011.
He returned to the Gremio, where he lifted the 2006 Brasileirao, in June 2022, at a time when the three-time Copa Libertadores champion was playing in the second division of Brazil. At the end of that year, they won the ticket back to Serie A.
“I am closing my career where I wanted, but not in the way I wanted,” he lamented.