The story of Richarlison’s rise from poverty to the Selecao

Today we will talk about the Brazilian starlet Richarlison and his meteoric rise from the poor areas of Brazil to top-flight English football.

Richarlison de Andrade grew up in Nova Venecia in the south-eastern state of Espirito Santo — which boasts fantastic beaches but is better known for producing steel and petroleum than footballers.

He didn’t have an idyllic childhood and had to overcome the brutal streets of Brazil on his way to the Premier League.

Richarlison even had a near-death experience, which now remembers with a smile on his face.

“My life could have ended several times from being in the wrong place at the wrong time,” he said via FFT.

“On the day that the guy pointed the gun at my head, he thought I was a drug dealer trying to steal his distribution point. I was scared. I thought: ‘If he pulls the trigger I’m dead’ – but I survived and moved on.”

At 16, Richarlison’s life changed when he met businessman Renato Velasco, who saw his potential while playing in the youth team at local club Real Noroeste.

Velasco helped the young winger to secure a move to America-MG in Brazil’s second tier in December 2014.

Richarlison was an instant hit in the youth categories and was promoted to the first team by manager Givanildo Oliveira. The youngster scored 9 goals in his 24 appearances for America Mineiro, as they earned a promotion to Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A.

He moved to Fluminense in 2016, where he established himself as one of the most exciting prospects in the Brazilian League.

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It was more than obvious that he is moving to Europe in the summer of 2017 and a phone call from the Portuguese manager Marco Silva persuaded Richarlison to snub Ajax and join Watford instead.

The start of his Premier League career was excellent, as the winger netted five times and provided four assists in his first 13 games in top-flight English football.

However, he ended the campaign in poor fashion and managed to note only one assist in the remaining part of the season.

Marco Silva was sacked by Watford meanwhile and was appointed as a new Everton boss for the 2018-19 season. And, of course, he brought Richarlison with him.

The 21-year old winger moved to Merseyside for a transfer fee starting at £35 million and potentially rising to £50 million. He scored twice on his debut against Wolverhampton and is now enjoying an excellent debut season with the Toffees.

His opener against Chelsea on 10 March took the Brazilian’s goal tally to an impressive 12 in the league so far this season.

He is only three goals behind Andrei Kanchelskis, Yakubu and Romelu Lukaku, who each scored 15 times in their first seasons with the Toffees and hold the record for most goals in a debut season for Everton jointly.

Richarlison made his Brazil debut on 8 September in a friendly game against the USA and has made six appearances since then.

He scored his debut goal for the national team four days later against El Salvador, netting twice in a 5-0 victory.

The forward is one of the most gifted players on the planet, and with his natural talent and excellent technical ability, we expect him to be the leader of the Brazilian national team in future.

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