Rafinha talks to Marcet students about how to get on track with a successful sporting career.
Marcet Football University and Alcantara Foundation have been working together for years to develop social inclusion and opportunities for young people through sport. Thiago Alcantara himself recently explained the details of this collaboration. His brother, Rafinha, went to the Marcet facilities at the end of the 2021-22 season to chat with the Professional Program‘s students, who were delighted to hear the advice of a player who has passed through Barça, Inter, PSG , Real Sociedad…
“I went through your situation,” explained the Brazilian soccer player to his young audience. “I also had your dream and I fought for it. It seemed impossible to me to become a professional player, especially because I saw how good my brother [Thiago] was. But precisely for that reason I tried harder, because I always compared myself with him.
Rafinha detailed to the Professional Program’s students all the difficulties that he had to overcome to reach the top. Especially the injuries, which took him off the pitch three times. “The first time, it was right at the best moment of my career, when I was at Barça. I injured the cruciate ligament. Years later it was the meniscus, and then again the cruciate. But all these injuries made me grow as a person. I even thought that I was not going to play football again. They were very hard times, but I got through them and learned from them.”
“Constancy” and “discipline” were some of the words most used by Rafinha during his speech. “To get there is difficult, but it is even more difficult to stay”. That’s what his father, Mazinho, had told him. And it was true. Success, according to Rafinha, has to do with talent, but much more with attitude.
“In my career I got results when I have tried hardest. I’ve played with unbelievably good players, really amazing… But some of them didn’t take training seriously, they didn’t have the right attitude, they didn’t pay attention to the coaches, and they ended up getting lost. If you don’t do things with dedication and commitment, you won’t get there. It doesn’t matter how talented you are.”