Roberto Carlos "didn't allow" Real Madrid loan out Marcelo
Speaking to ESPN, Roberto Carlos revealed how he refused to allow Real Madrid loan out Marcelo when the heir to his left-back throne first arrived at the club.
Roberto Carlos turned 47 on Friday and to mark the occasion ESPN sat down with the Brazil and Real Madrid legend to discuss several chapters from his distinguished career. And in one particular anecdote, the 2002 World Cup winner spoke about his compatriot and heir to his left back throne at Madrid, Marcelo.
In 2006, Madrid signed Marcelo from Brazilian club Fluminense, paying six million euros for the 18-year-old defender, who had been expertly spotted by Pedja Mijatovic, the Bernabéu's sporting director at the time.
Fabio Capello was coach and Roberto Carlos was still at Madrid when Marcelo arrived. And before his move to Galatasaray, the veteran full back served as a guardian figure to his young compatriot during Marcelo’s first season at the club.
"Absolutely not!" - Roberto Carlos on Madrid's Marcelo loan plans
Following his arrival, Madrid wanted to loan out Marcelo but when Roberto Carlos learned of the club’s intentions, he went directly to those in charge to give his thoughts on the matter.
He told ESPN: “I met Marcelo here when he was 18 years old. Madrid wanted to transfer him to some clubs here in Spain and I was the first to say no, absolutely not!"
Marcelo: Loan incident made me stronger
“When I was 18, a director called me to his office at the Bernabéu and I went alone. He told me that they wanted to transfer me to another club to gain experience and that they wanted me to return the following year,” said Marcelo.
“I told him that I was not going to move from Madrid. It was the worst moment because I knew that the team didn't need me, but it was also the moment that made me stronger.” Fortunately, though, for the young Marcelo, the loan move never materialised thanks to Roberto Carlos’ intervention.
Such was Roberto Carlos’ big brotherly influence on Marcelo’s early days at the Bernabéu that it helped pave the way for him to go on to become one of Madrid’s greatest-ever defenders.