FIFA U17 World Cup: CR7 fan Paulinho ‘excited’ before of playing in front of 60,000 people


Paulinho at the Salt Lake Stadium today. Image Source: XtraTime

Kolkata: All eyes would be on Brazil’s Paulinho as the star performer of the Selecao U17 team, who posseses the record of scoring goals as the youngest player in the Brazilian Serie A, is gearing up to taste the cheer of 60,000 people for the first time in his life. The gigantic Salt Lake Stadium might not have the same capacity it had before, but the size of the stadium is still huge enough to enthrall the players.

Talking about his inspiration, Paulinho didn’t hesitate for a moment as he said, “My inspiration is Cristiano Ronaldo. He has a lot of ambition and always wants to be better. He is a really hard working guy. About my expectations, we are working with this goal to be champions. We are working since 2015 to prepare for this moment. We know that each match has different history. We have to go step by step. We cannot think of final here. We have to think of quarter-final.”

Paulinho seemed to have goosebumps ahead of the quarter final, as he said, “I have never played in front of 60,000 people. I have played in front of 40,000 where they were supporting other team (laughs). It was a good experience for my club in the senior team. This is a positive thing for us and could be an advantage for us. We receive this energy in a positive way and expect to give it back in a great way.” He added, “The stadium is huge and beautiful. It will probably be full tomorrow. This is also the final venue. The feelings was the best possible because we are expecting to recieve good energy from the fans. We want to give it back to them and entertain them with our game.”

The Brazilian attacker confessed to receive motivational messages from their senior team players as he said, “Positive for us to receive messages like this.They have been in this competition before and some of them were champions. Some couldn’t win and now it’s our turn. We have a team with great potential. It’s good to hear from them, their experience what they had in this competition. It’s not a pressure for us. The senior guys, Jesus, Neymar and also Jorge are watching and supporting us.”

Scouts from all the top teams in the world are keeping a track on the players who are performing well in the competition. That’s adding motivation for Paulinho, as he said, “Right now we are focused in our game and in the competition. I am sure it’s an opportunity (to get noticed) for every player in this competition. It’s not a pressure for us as our minds are in our game. We take this as an opportunity. Whatever comes in the future will be a consequence of what we do here.”

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