Alexandre Pato- Hero to Zero
Alexandre Pato was considered one of the most talented youngsters we have ever seen, yet at only 24 years old he would be considered a flop.
He began his career at the age of 16 years old in Sport Clube Internacional where in his debut match he would score in the first minute with a pinpoint shot inat the bottom right corner and would also get two brilliant assists before being subbed out in the 77 minutes. His astronomical first season would rise to a different level when he broke Pele's world record of being the youngest player to ever score in a Fifa official tournament. This would cause his hype to explode, therefore making headlines for the top sports magazines in the world.
A new star is born
In 2007 Pato was transferred to AC Milan for the fee of 24 million euros (currently 139 million reais), everyone was talking about this Brazilian wonderkid who had the world on his feet, and he did not disappoint, scoring once again on his debut against Napoli. His first season was extremely successful, having scored 9 goals and had 3 assists in 20 matches." If he dedicated himself the way we believed he would, he would have become the greatest striker we have ever seen" said Cafu talking about his first season. In the 2008-2009 Serie A season, Pato would lead his club in scoring with 18 goals in 42 games, while his teammate and recent Ballon Dór winner Kaká scored 16 goals in 36 games. In the 2009-20010 season, Kaká left the club to join Real Madrid and Pato became in charge of leading his club into success, yet the pressure did not affect him scoring 12 goals and having 1 assist in 23 games for the Serie A. Pato continued improving and in the 2010-2011 season he would have the best season of his entire career, with 16 goals and 4 assists in 33 games, and became the first Brazilian to ever win the Serie A young player of the year. Although his biggest achievement that season was scoring the 5th fastest goal in Champions League history against Barcelona, 24 seconds after kick-off.
His downfall came shortly after his peak, having constant hamstring and muscular leg injuries, for the next two years Pato would only be able to play in 25 games. Doctors believe that since he had grown 8cm in 3 months when he was already 21 years old his body was still quite weak, causing the injuries. He would then return to his country and play for Corinthians.
When Pato was officially a player for Corinthians the fans went wild, everyone wanted to know how the football star would play once again in Brazil and the expectations were insane, to top it all off he continued his streak of scoring in debuts against Oeste in the 5-0 victory. Unfortunately, his season did not follow the same pattern, he once again struggled with injuries and only scored 17 goals in 2 years.
The Penalty that changed his career
Towards his career at Corinthians he was not able to play well, his biggest criticism was that he did not run, it didn't seem he wanted to win, but this could all change in the quarter-finals of the Copa Do Brasil where Gremio and Corinthians went to penalties. The score was 3-2 Gremio and Pato had to score to keep Corinthians alive, against him was Dida, a world-renowned keeper and an expert penalty saver. He then decided to chip, Dida easily caught it and Corinthians were eliminated. Everyone went crazy including the players and manager, "Everyone wanted to hit him" said Douglas, a former Cortinhas player, "Tite destroyed him" said Emerson Sheik, another former Corinthians player.
Pato although not retired has vanished from the pinnacle of the sport, after Corinthians he went to different clubs and was never able to once again play like his former self, Alexandre Pato is the definition of a star that did not succeed, and just like that the "new Ronaldo" failed