A Brazilian footballer has revealed how he sold his Club World Cup medal to pay for a two-day cocaine binge.
Flavio Donizete was part of the Sao Paulo side that triumphed over Liverpool 15 years ago.
It was undoubtedly the highest point of Donizete’s career before it sensationally spiralled out of control. Two years later the former defender endured the toughest battle of his life as his addiction to cocaine simply left him with nothing.
Donizete ended up spending every penny he had on the drug that consumed his life for 13-years. “After I got to know cocaine, I lost too much,” Donizete told the Recordpublication having been clean for 18 months.
“It was 13 years of addiction to cocaine. This disease is slow, progressive, incurable, and fatal. I almost died. I sold it (the medal) so I could use drugs. I sold it for 7000 reais (R21 000),” he explained.
“Until then I used it sparingly. Until cocaine got stronger in my life, I started losing everything I had. The money I used to buy drugs. I was not without drugs in the morning, afternoon and night. The money I had in my account, the things I had, I started to lose. I lost everything. I only didn’t lose my wife, my daughters and my family, who are with me today.”
“I used the drug and stayed at home. Then I cleaned the house and messed up the house. In one day, I cleaned and messed up the house about 20 times. All because of the drug.”
Now 36, Donizete is now free of drugs and working as a gardener in the town of Americana, in the interior of Sao Paulo state.
He still dreams of making a comeback as a professional, but laments the years lost to his excesses.