Thiago Maia remembers his struggles, cancer of mother, and cries during press-conference
Santos' 19-year-old midfielder Thiago Maia, who will represent the Brazilian national team in next month's Olympic Games, got emotional during his press-conference on Monday.
Thiago Maia, who was born in the state of Roraima, remembered his difficult past, and the struggle to reach the Brazilian national team at the age of 19. He said: "When I was called up, my father was so emotional. He always fought for my rights, and my dreams. The football in Roraima state is not like São Paulo or Rio de Janeiro... I suffered a lot with my family. My mother had cancer, had kidney stones and suffered a lot."
He added: "We are very evangelical, attached to God. My mother is a warrior, who left family, studies and work for my life. It's difficult to see parents do that. Jesus died for us, we have to trust him that everything will be alright."
Thiago Maia then talked about Barcelona forward Neymar, who also came through the youth system of Santos. He said: "Neymar is a reference, and I'm happy. I support him, and pray for his life. I didn't know him so closely, but he's humble, polite, intelligent, playful and despite his age, still a kid. I'm still living a dream. My father asked me a video of Neymar. I'm still kind of shy with Neymar and I shake when he comes to talk to me. Especially because he plays with Suárez, Messi, and with my idol Mascherano."