Queiroz reveals Nani agony
Carlos Queiroz has revealed Nani threatened to 'jump out of the car' in a bid to prolong his World Cup dream.
By Luis Mira & Francisco Acedo
Last Updated: 14/08/10 10:42pm
Portugal national coach Carlos Queiroz has revealed that winger Nani threatened to 'jump out of the car' in a bid to prolong his doomed World Cup dream.
The Manchester United winger was forced to sit out Portugal's campaign after sustaining a shoulder injury in training just days before his team left for South Africa.
Nani still travelled with the Seleccao to Magaliesburg, where their training camp was located, but he was ultimately ruled out of the event and replaced by Benfica midfielder Ruben Amorim.
And Queiroz has claimed the talented wide man was prepared to go to astonishing extremes to remain with Portugal and play his part in the showpiece event.
"He knew about it [the injury] immediately, it is just that his psychological reactions were extremely painful and complex," Queiroz told Expresso.
"When we went to get his first X-ray done, Nani, in an act of despair, grabbed the car's stick shift and said: 'If you take me there, I will jump out of the car right here on the highway.
"He was determined. His passion and desire to represent Portugal had no limits. It was his World Cup, at the age of 22.
"He would ask me: 'Coach, give me two days, two days and I will be fine'. He refused to accept that the fracture existed."
Nani admitted to Maisfutebol/TVI: "It was the worst moment of my career. I cried because missing out on playing in the World Cup was very difficult.
"For me, football is life but the unhappy days are behind me and I have recovered from the problem. Now I am fit and have high hopes for this season."