sport news Champions League final: Liverpool star Fabinho will be out to haunt former club ... trends now

sport news Champions League final: Liverpool star Fabinho will be out to haunt former club ... trends now
sport news Champions League final: Liverpool star Fabinho will be out to haunt former club ... trends now

sport news Champions League final: Liverpool star Fabinho will be out to haunt former club ... trends now

It is widely accepted that Fabinho is one of the most dominant holding midfielders in world football after becoming a crucial player in Jurgen Klopp's all-conquering Liverpool side – but many may be unfamiliar with just how he got to where he is now.

Ahead of this Saturday's Champions League final, it may be surprising to learn that Fabinho has actually played for Liverpool's opponents in the Paris showpiece, Real Madrid, during a brief stint there during the 2012-13 campaign.

But let's go back to where it all began for the defensive midfielder. 

Fabinho could come back to haunt Real Madrid in the Champions League final this weekend

Fabinho could come back to haunt Real Madrid in the Champions League final this weekend

The Brazilian has become one of the best holding midfielders in world football for Liverpool

The Brazilian has become one of the best holding midfielders in world football for Liverpool

Having risen through the ranks at Fluminense in his native Brazil, Fabinho caught the eye of Portuguese side Rio Ave after shining in a youth tournament – the Copa Sao Paulo.

Despite not making a single senior appearance for Fluminense, Rio Ave handed a 17-year-old Fabinho a six-year deal to make the switch to Europe.

Less than a month after arriving on the north east coast of Portugal, Real Madrid came calling and Fabinho was on the move once again, joining the Spanish giants' reserve team on a season-long loan.

'We arrived in Portugal, but I stayed around at Rio Ave for just two weeks, maybe three at the most,' Fabinho told FourFourTwo.

'I had a barbecue with other Brazilians and then my agent called to say that Real Madrid Castilla [Real Madrid reserve team] needed a right-back and wanted to know if I was interested.

A 17-year-old Fabinho was sent on loan from Rio Ave to Real Madrid Castilla in 2012

A 17-year-old Fabinho was sent on loan from Rio Ave to Real Madrid Castilla in 2012

'Then one night, Lucio [Araujo, brother of former Chelsea and Barcelona midfielder Deco], came and told me to pack my things because Jorge Mendes was on his way by car in the early hours of the morning.

'I was like, "Is something wrong?" Nobody said a word, but then at some point in the car, Mendes said we were travelling to Madrid and that I would sign for them.

'I called my mum in Brazil to tell her about that and she started to cry. No one had expected something this huge to happen in such a short time. It was a very special moment for me.'

The very special moment would later become a surreal one for Fabinho, following a late-night visit from a familiar face.

He continued: 'We headed to the hotel in Madrid, and while I was still sleeping, I woke up to somebody knocking on the door. I looked through the peephole and couldn't believe it. It was Mendes and Jose Mourinho!

'I was still wearing my pyjamas, not at all prepared to meet him. I

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