Ricardo Nascimento. Photo: Twitter
Ricardo Nascimento. Photo: Twitter
Earlier this year, Nascimento was unveiled as a new recruit at Royal AM just days after parting ways with Sundowns.
Nascimento, who recently turned 35, signed for the Tshwane giants in July 2016 from Monte Azul in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Nascimento played 144 matches in all competitions for Masandawana, scoring 17 goals with two assists.
He was part of four consecutive PSL title-winning campaigns as well as one CAF Super Cup and Nedbank Cup triumph. However, Nascimento had to be deregistered due to Mamelodi Sundowns already having a full quota of five foreign players on their books.
According to co-coach Rhulani Mokwena, Sundowns had plans for Nascimento to stay longer at the club in a different capacity, but he felt he had more football left in him before retiring.
Previously, a Phakaaathi insider suggested Nascimento is now earning around half-a-million rand per month, if not more, for his services at MaMkhize’s Royal AM.
Nascimento has now revealed more about his new deal in the the latest edition of Kick Off magazine.
“I was very scared and sad (in hearing that he would be released) because I always thought about ending my career at Sundowns.
“When I say I was scared, and sad, it is because I didn’t know what was going to happen with my playing career. I never imagined that I would leave Sundowns this way. All along all was fine and no one ever spoke to me about it (possibility of being released). However, I know that in football everything changes very fast.
“The negotiations (with Royal AM) were very fast. Really fast. As soon as we solved the financial part, which was the most important part, I realised that she wanted me to play for Royal AM. This was important for me. The proposal from Royal AM was so good I was even surprised.”
The stalwart was spotted in KZN soon after leaving ‘Downs, with Royal AM confirming the arrival of the Brazilian on 10 February as he was unveiled by MaMkhize. You can watch that video here.
Recently, Rhulani Mokwena praised Nascimento for his service at Sundowns.
“Ricardo Nascimento, ja, well, I’m sure the club will officially release a statement and I think that is only fair and proper,” Mokwena said after Monday’s PSL win, as quoted by iDiski Times.
“Because the reality is when a loyal servant like Ricardo has served you with such distinction, it is only proper that you deal with his departure with the best possible dignity and respect for the profile and his contribution.
“He’s been nothing but a loyal servant. His performances on the pitch, speak only about a player that was always willing to do more than required of him.
“The qualities that he possessed will be very, very difficult to replicate, one or two to replace, so we’ve got our work cut out as a club to make sure that we get a player with the same sort of technical, tactical qualities, if not better.
“So that shows and speaks about his qualities as a football player, but over and above that, for me, I always say that good football players are only good if they are good human beings.
“And I don’t think I’ve got one bad word to say about Ricardo Nascimento. I don’t think anybody at the club has got a single bad word to say about Ricardo. A gentle giant, a humble soul, someone that’s always wearing a smile on his face, always prepared to do more than required, shows huge determination and perseverance.
“He’s had two very, very big surgeries, and those did not stop him from being able to recover and to serve this club, and when you have that type of mentality, because you have the right sort of human qualities, it helps you to become a very good football player.”