Brazil legend Adriano on X-rated Jose Mourinho rows and drinking binges

Brazil and Inter Milan icon Adriano's career is often described as one of the biggest cases of 'what if?' in recent memory, having been one of the best strikers in the world despite never reaching his full potential.

The striker, nicknamed 'The Emperor', started his career in Brazil with Flamengo before shooting to fame at Inter.

Adriano had an explosive shot and was quick, but was constantly hampered by injuries, leading to him quickly falling away from the limelight.

The tragic death of his father in 2004 derailed his career entirely, and he fell into a deep depression afterwards, one he was ultimately unable to truly recover from.

Speaking to the Players Tribune, Adriano opened up on how he turned to drink to recover, but denied he had ever used drugs.

“I was broken from my father’s death. I wanted to feel like myself again. I wasn’t on drugs. Was I drinking? Yes, of course. Hell yes, I was. Cheers to you, brother.

“Listen, if you test my piss — hand to God — you’re not going to find any drugs in my system. The day that I do drugs is the day that my mom and nan will die. But you know what? You will definitely find some booze. That p**s cup is probably going to turn cloudy like a caipirinha!

“When I came home to Rio to play for Flamengo, I did not want to be The Emperor anymore. I wanted to be Adriano. I wanted to have fun again. And brother, we had some fun.

“I will tell you the truth about that Flamengo team. Sometimes we showed up to training not for the football, but just for the drinks afterward.

"As soon as we were dismissed from training — poom! — party time. Straight to the Mercado Produtor. All the wives knew the deal! ‘We’ll be home at midnight!’ Hahahaha!

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  • “The next day at training, someone would really be suffering, and another guy would say, ‘It’s O.K., brother. I see that you’re f***ed. I’ll run for you! I got you!!!’”

    Adriano played under Jose Mourinho during his time at Inter, but left just prior to the treble-winning season of 2009/10.

    And he explained that he just couldn't deal with playing under the iconic coach, and that he "couldn't cope" at times.

    “In 2008, it was the time of Mourinho at Inter, and everything was just too much," Adriano continued.

    “The press were following me everywhere, and everything with Mourinho was, ‘F*****g hell! F*****g s**t! You’re going to f**k me, aren’t you, boy?’

    “I said, ‘Oh Lord. Get me out of here.’ I just couldn’t cope. I got called for the national team, and before I left Mourinho said, ‘You’re not coming back, you are?’ I said, ‘You already know it!’ One-way ticket, brother.”

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