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Chapecoense goalkeeper Nivaldo has announced his retirement from the game effective immediately.
The 42-year old was absent from the squad that were travelling to Medellin, Colombia for the first leg of the Copa Sudamericana final against Atletico Nacional and 19 of his teammates sadly lost their lives in the crash. He was initially slated to be on the flight but didn't end up going.
Nivaldo, who has been with the club for ten years, was due to play his 300th appearance for the club infront of home fans in the final league game of the season against Atletico Mineiro on Sunday.
Because of the disastrous turn of events where 71 people sadly lost their lives, all remaining games in Brazil were suspended and so Nivaldo will unfortunately not get the chance to play his 300th game - with the keeper now announcing his immediate retirement from the game.
Speaking to Globe Esporte, he said:
"I was supposed to go on the trip but ended up staying. Everything has a reason in life. I didn't travel to Palmeiras (on Sunday), because it would make my farewell game to play here against Atletico-MG, when I would complete 300 games for the club.
"As there was a change in the trip, they would not return to Chapeco and instead go straight from Sao Paulo to Medellin. So Caio [Junior] said he would not take me."
Understandably struggling to hold back the tears, Nivaldo told reporters of his decision to call time on his career, in a video posted on Twitter.
Vídeo: Nivaldo, goleiro há 10 anos na @ChapecoenseReal , que não embarcou para a Colômbia. pic.twitter.com/FhPTyBQK5C
- Eduardo Matos (@_eduardomatos) November 30, 2016
Truly heartbreaking for all those involved - our thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by the horrible tragedy.
(h/t 101 Great Goals)
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