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Marcelo’s story of nerves before big UCL final

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Real Madrid’s Marcelo talks about anxiety and trying, not to s*** his pants before the 2018 UEFA Champions League final with Liverpool.

Marcelo is a seasoned professional, who has played at the very top in crucial games almost all his career.

So after already being in four Champions League finals, you would think he was used to it.

Not so!

In an interview reported by Marca, he talks of anxiety so bad he thought he might die and problems controlling his bowel movement.

All part and parcel in preparing to face Liverpool in the 2018 Champions League final.

The anxiety felt life threating.

He said:

“I couldn’t breathe. I was trying not to panic.”

“This was in the dressing room right before the Champions League final against Liverpool in 2018.”

“It felt like I had something stuck in my chest.”

“This huge pressure. Do you know that feeling?”

“I am not talking about nerves. Nerves are normal in football.”

“This was something different.”I am telling you, brother, it felt like I was suffocating.”

This ordeal started 24 hours before the final, as he tried to rest and go through the final preparations of the biggest match of the season.

He added:

“Everything had started the night before the final.’

“I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t sleep.”

“I was thinking only of the match. It was funny, actually, because my wife, Clarice, gets so mad at me for biting my nails, and she finally got me to stop a few years ago.”

“But I woke up the morning of the final, and all my nails were gone.”

He was used to getting the proverbial butterflies, but this was different.

He continued:

“A little bit of nerves is normal in football.”

“I don’t care who you are, if you’re not feeling anxious before playing in a final, you’re not a real person.”

Controlling your bowels can be an issue to he said:

“You’re just trying not to s*** your pants. It’s the truth, brother!”

“For me, the pressure was the most intense before the Liverpool final.”

“I had never had such intense anxiety before, so I didn’t know what was happening.”

“I thought about calling for the doctor, but I was worried that he wouldn’t let me play. And I had to play, 100 percent. I had to prove something to myself.”

He thought he’d survived the worst of it, but it really hit home though as the last minute preparations were underway.

He continued:

“So I was sitting at my locker, struggling to breathe.”

“I thought to myself,  Calm yourself. Lace-up your boots, brother’.”

“I knew that if I could just make it out to the pitch, I would be okay. For me, nothing bad can happen on a football pitch.”

Then the big moment came.

He concluded:

“When I finally stepped onto the grass, I was still having trouble breathing, and I thought, if I have to die out here tonight, f*** it. I’ll die.”

To have watched the game, you would have never known what he was going through his mind.

He and his teammates made history by winning another Champions League trophy, beating Liverpool 3-1.

marcelo, real madrid
KIEV, UKRAINE – MAY 26: Marcelo of Real Madrid lifts The UEFA Champions League trophy following their sides victory in the UEFA Champions League Final between Real Madrid and Liverpool at NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium on May 26, 2018 in Kiev, Ukraine. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)