AC Milan forward Rafael Leao has said that winning the Champions League would be worth much more than the €10m salary that he could get elsewhere.
Speaking during an interview with GQ Portugal (via Milan News), the Portuguese forward discussed a wide range of topics such as his interest in music, the Champions League semi-final from last season, and his ambitions with the Rossoneri.
He spoke passionately about how he feels Milan are on the right track towards success, saying: “I think the club is on the right track, we managed to reach the semi-finals of the Champions League. Now the club’s goal must be to keep going up, to keep adding, to keep being strong. And I’m sure Milan will soon return to winning a Champions League, which is our goal. I speak for myself, I’m young, I’m a player who wants to win big things, the Champions League I think is the dream of every player and we are working for that,” Leao said.
He was asked about how young this Milan team is and how that can translate to success but Leao pointed out how experienced many of the players are despite their young ages.
“Although we are young, we have already played more than 50 games in Serie A, more than 20 in the Champions League, we already have some experience. We can take this experience and this freshness of being young and apply it on the pitch to achieve our goals,” he said.
The major heartbreak last season for Milan was the defeat to Inter in the Champions League semi-final and the former Sporting CP and Lille forward offered a couple of reasons as to why they could not reach the final in Istanbul.
“We had a few absences and, due to the lack of solutions on the bench, Inter were clearly superior. They have a very complete team, both in the starting eleven and on the bench, and I think that made the difference in the two games,” said the Portuguese.
On his future and the chance to move to Saudi Arabia
“You can never say never, but I’m at a club that has welcomed me very well, I’ve renewed now, if I had plans to leave I wouldn’t renew. I’m focused on doing great things in two or three years at AC Milan. I have not yet achieved great things to leave for a league like that [Saudi Pro League]. These days money has spoken louder, but for me a Champions League is worth more than a €10 million salary, for example.”
Leao’s music career
“It was two band members who were already singing, Juzicy and KidRobin, who encouraged me to start singing. Since we are a group of friends who grew up together in the same neighbourhood, it was natural for me to join the group. What I try to do in music is to make people not afraid to express what they have inside. My goal is to push the people in my neighbourhood, the people I share my daily life with, not to be afraid to express what they want to express, to always be themselves.
“My goal is to push the artists on my label to reach certain stages that I think are attainable. As an artist, I don’t only think of myself. To give visibility, precisely. I started making music as a hobby. Now I can say it’s also a job, because I take things seriously.”
Leading a double career
“I live well with it, of course people will put the two together and my stage name will never speak as loudly as my footballer name. They will always be connected.”