Marcelo had a difficult childhood: his parents worked from dawn to dusk, were paid little and struggled to make a living. His mother was a teacher and often worked as a cleaning woman in cafes and shops. His father was a firefighter.
Since the age of 9, Marcelo started to play futsal. In order to attend training sessions, he had to travel from one end of Rio to another every day, but the family did not have the money to buy him a bus ticket.
Thus, his grandfather drove him every day – in an old Volkswagen Beetle.
“This was a very important part of my life – it was completely related to this car. My grandfather taught me how to drive it. He took me to the training ground every day.
“I remember that it was very old. Even the radio stations switched automatically if he just turned the steering wheel sharply.
“I didn’t have a penny in my pocket. But it was then that I realized: you need to appreciate every moment and enjoy your life even if you have nothing. It helps me a lot now that I’m at Real Madrid. These thoughts keep me from forgetting where I came from.”