Former Manchester City midfielder Elano has given a pretty long interview to Brazilian website UOL this week.
With the Premier League side being an important part of his career, the player had a lot to say about that time, revealing he regrets having left the club in 2009 to join Galatasaray.
“I regret. Going to Galatasaray was good, but I should have stayed in England for longer. I had the market to stay. I should have continued. I took the beginning of this City process there’s today,” Elano told UOL.
“I could reach some achievements such as winning the two derbies against United, which for 20 years City didn’t win, I won the prize of best of the month in the Premier League… They are achievements that were important. Unfortunately I couldn’t win the titles. “
One of the reasons Elano was so happy at Manchester City was for the presence of other Brazilians in the squad. Especially Robinho, who had been his teammate at Santos, where they won two Brazilian titles playing together.
“There was a game in which Mark Hughes began to tell him in English that he had to track back to defend. Then he asked me: ‘What’s the coach talking about?’
“I said: ‘For you to track back, because you’re not defending, you should track back. You only want to attack.'”
That’s when Robinho mixed Portuguese with a little of English to tell Hughes he couldn’t defend, and Elano laughed so hard he couldn’t help his friend.
“He looked at the coach and said: ‘Mister, eu não vou fazer come back. Eu come back, no goal. Come back, no goal.’
“The whole team was listening. He looked at me, used to call me carpet because of my long hair: ‘Damn, Carpet, help me’.’
“Help how? I can’t stand or talk. Mark Hughes looked and said: ‘F***ing Brazilian crazy man.’
“We went through the game, everyone was laughing. You can’t stay serious in a situation like this.”
Elano was also asked to talk about a fight with Craig Bellamy, which has been covered in the Welsh player’s biography.
“This guy is crazy. At Liverpool he already wanted to beat a guy with a baseball bat. Did you know that?’
“Then he arrived at City. And everyone was getting along super well. The fight was with Robinho. Because we had a game against Middlesbrough, we lost 2-1. Then we went into the locker room, he came in cursing Robinho: ‘Why don’t you play here just as you play in the national team?’
“And I didn’t understand. It was me, Glauber, Robinho, Giovanni and Jô. I looked at Glauber, I said: ‘I don’t understand what this guy is talking about.”
“Then he said, ‘He’s angry at Robinho’.
“Then Glauber got up and squared up to him. Then I went and said: ‘Hey Glauber, let it go, stop it, stop it’.
“Then Marquinhos, the coach, came in, told them to stop and it stopped.”
That wasn’t all, with Elano seemingly having a long list of stories covering his time at Manchester City.
“Then we were leaving Middlesbrough on the bus, the guys explained to Robinho what had happened. Then we came to training another day, Robinho went to speak to him. But he went to talk to him.”
“He got up and squared up to Robinho. He squared up to Robinho. When he got up to Robinho, half of the dressing room stood up. Most guys couldn’t stand him. They didn’t like his attitude.
“Now he wrote a book. Then he is putting in his book what gets an audience. But the truth of the situation is that he went into the locker room, that the guys, everyone wanted to beat him. Then he got two names that would not weigh on him, who are far from him, which is me and Robinho, and he put it in.
“But the truth was I had nothing to do with the problem. The problem is his, that he came in cursing Robinho, there was a mess in the locker room, but no one attacked anyone, nobody fought with anyone. Work went on. It was just that. So he reports in his book that he said this, that I did this, that Robinho did that.
“First, he was going to get beaten up. If something had really happened, he was going to be beaten up. Because he was alone, and we were in five, and no one touched him.”
Brazilian footballers are often a treat when speaking to their home country’s media. Not afraid to tell these stories and reveal things which otherwise would have stayed hidden, or been saved for hyped up autobiographies.