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Money is not a motivating factor. Money doesn't thrill me or make me play better because there are benefits to being wealthy. I'm just happy with a ball at my feet. My motivation comes from playing the game I love. If I wasn't paid to be a professional footballer I would willingly play for nothing.
I just want people to see me as a hard-working footballer and someone who is passionate about the game.
I have never imagined doing anything other than football, but now, thinking about it coldly, if I hadn't been a footballer, I would have been a musician.
There are two metaphors for Mario the person and not Mario the footballer. I think I am a man, but I don't believe I need to say it. But I could also be Peter Pan because I do things my own way and I am free. So, yes, maybe I should say that I am Peter Pan - although I am much more of a man.
At the end of the day, I'm a footballer who has played at some of the biggest football clubs in the world and played with some of the best players in the world.
To be a footballer was just a dream, and I don't believe in dreams. I only deal in what is real. To be honest, I've never thought about what I could get out of football or where it would take me. I just wanted to play. I'm the same now.
I want to be a footballer - and that means playing on a Saturday afternoon.
Every footballer wants to play forever. And if you are going to keep on playing - to enjoy it to the full - you want to win games, and as a result, trophies.
As a kid, you obviously dream of being a professional footballer. I would watch players like Ronaldo of Brazil and pretend to be him in the playground. But I don't think about trying to become one of the best in the world or anything like that. I just play football.
I take compliments and I take constructive criticism. Not everyone loves you. It's the way you react as a footballer. I use it all to make me play better.
Timothy F. Cahill
There would be no debate about who was the best footballer the world had ever seen - me or Pele. Everyone would say me.
As a footballer, you always want to test yourself against the best.
Celebrity culture, it's everywhere, isn't it? It's reality TV, Big Brother. I didn't become a footballer to be famous, I became a footballer to be successful. I didn't want to be famous. Now people want to be famous. Why? Why would you want people following you about all day?
A friend at school was always being laughed at because his father emptied dustbins for a living. But those who laughed worshipped famous footballers. This is an example of our topsy-turvy view of 'success.' Who would we miss most if they did not work for a month, the footballer or the garbage collector?
Even as a footballer, I was always being creative.
I had an early taste of fame. I was 20, going out with TV presenter Dani Behr and we'd have paparazzi chasing us. I'm not comfortable being photographed, though I accept it is part of the job. I had to ask myself, 'What comes first, being a celebrity or footballer?'
Hendrix was the first person I had come across who seemed completely free, and when you're nine or 10, your life is entirely dominated by adults. So he represented this thing that I wanted to be. Hendrix was the first person who made me think it might be good to be a singer and a guitarist - before that I wanted to be a footballer.
Would I swap what I have achieved as a cook if I could have been as successful as a footballer? Definitely.
I always wanted kids I could take to work, and for them to experience the things I experience. So, having three boys as a footballer was a dream.
Ryan Giggs will go down as the most successful British footballer of all time and I cannot see anyone ever overtaking him. He's on the brink of his 13th league title, after all.
We had to be down early to get the best stuff for the pros we looked after and then get the rags that we were left ourselves for training. It seems very old school but it grounded me as a person and made me appreciate everything as a footballer, because all we got was a pair of boots.
Real Madrid is the most important thing that happened to me, both as a footballer and as a person.
Nobody expects a footballer to have any kind of an IQ, which is a bit of an unfair stereotype.
The lifestyle I lead as a footballer means I am always in the spotlight.
I was always determined to make it as a footballer, but if things hadn't worked out, I'd have maybe followed my dad into the building industry.
I look at Messi, and he makes me laugh. A beautiful footballer who is still like a kid. A world superstar, but still a kid. Innocent, you know. He just plays.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Leonardo da Vinci
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No bird soars too high if he soars with his own wings.
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