Ah, Adryan. He wasn’t very good, was he?
Sandwiched between an iconic past rich with success and their current emphatic revival under Argentine Marcelo Bielsa, Leeds United suffered Championship relegation, Neil Warnock, Paul Heckingbottom, Uwe Rosler, countless downs and very few ups and, of course, Massimo Cellino – the engineer of all things mad.
Cellino was arguably the worst of the lot when it came to soiling Leeds United’s prestigious name – sucking the lifeblood out of the club in a reign of terror that raged for four years between 2014 and 2018. But fans weren’t to know that. They just wanted change; some sort of hope they could hold onto for the trials to come. And it looked like they were going to get it when Cellino orchestrated a move for exotic talent Adryan Oliveira Tavares joined on loan from Brazilian outfit Flamengo in 2014 (as per club official site).
On paper, the midfielder, formally known as ‘Adryan,’ should have been excellent. He’d been heavily involved in the international set-up since under-15 level, and was, quite rightly, touted as one of the newest wonderkids churned out by one of the finest footballing nations in the world when he became Leeds United’s 13th signing of the summer.
Ah, yes – the lucky number 13. The more superstitious among us may have realised that the man dubbed the ‘New Zico’ by ambitious Flamengo fans (as per Yorkshire Evening Post) was doomed to fail as soon as he crossed the t’s and dotted the i’s on his contract at Elland Road.
For the man who carried so much hype his introduction to Leeds squad was, shall we say, a tad late. Just like a child finding a Christmas present weeks prior to the big day and having wait weeks to unwrap it, Leeds had to wait not one but two months before they saw their new ‘star’ in action – Darko Milanic eventually handing him his full debut against Norwich.
In fairness, he actually looked the part for a bit – collecting two assists in his opening six games. Cellino may have pulled off a blinder. Shock. Awe. It was the changed all Leeds fans had been waiting patiently for and it came in the form of a psychotic Italian and his plastic Zico; but no one cared, this was there chance. At least, they thought it was – until “that” faithful day against Derby.
Words don’t really do it justice, so we’ve conveniently attached a GIF for your entertainment. Leeds won the game but Adryan was never the same again. Presumably because of the gunshot wound he sustained?
— Gareth Everson (@garetheverson) September 24, 2018
The Brazilian now plays in Switzerland for Sion, a long way from his prestigious ties.
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