Renowned soccer agent Mino Raiola lashed out after false reports he had passed away circulated on the internet.
“Current health status for the ones wondering: pissed off second time in 4 months they kill me,” Raiola said in a tweet. “Seem also able to ressuscitate.”
Raiola was taken to Milan’s San Raffaele Hospital in January and is in critical condition, though he is still alive, according to Jose Fortes Rodrigues, his business partner.
False reports sweep the net
Reports of Raiola’s death hit the internet Thursday morning as many reporters and verified sources confirmed the rumors. The story continued to spread through fan pages and casual supporters and took over the internet.
Notably, respected insider Fabrizio Romano never confirmed the incident.
Raiola was admitted to the hospital back in January with what was labeled a non-life-threatening illness. Expectations were that the Italian would undergo observation and later start a rehabilitation process at home; however, as his status continued to worsen, the forecast became gloomier.
Doctor Alberto Zangrillo, the man in charge of monitoring the Italian’s condition, had the following remarks:
“I’m indignant at the phone calls by pseudo journalists speculating on the life of a man who is fighting [for his life],” Zangrillo said to Italian news agency ANSA.
Rodrigues also spoke of Raiola’s situation, admitting it was far from optimal but also denying the rumors.
“He is not dead, but he is fighting for his life,” said Rodrigues.
Raiola the soccer giant
Raiola is one of the biggest personalities in the world of soccer despite having no professional playing experience. He is often sought after by high-profile players to negotiate massive deals, which usually include huge, sometimes-perceived exorbitant fees for his services.
The Italian-born agent currently represents Erling Haaland, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Paul Pogba and Gianluigi Donnarumma, among others. He started his career with Sports Promotions and eventually left to form his own agency; his breakthrough client was Pavel Nedved, who he helped secure a move from Sparta Prague to Lazio in 1996.
In 2016, Raiola helped Pogba set a then-world record transfer of £89m ($110.6m) from Juventus to Manchester United. He was also rumored to be a future representative of Chelsea outcast Romelu Lukaku, a player he had previously represented, who went to the Blues for £97.5m ($121.2m) last summer.
Before working on behalf of players, he was the head of Dutch side HFC Haarlem’s youth team, whom he had also briefly played for.