“I used to wash cars for such little money just so I had enough money to buy my football boots. My family was so poor that football for me was about survival. I told my mother from a young age, ‘Don’t worry, I will become a football player and get us out of this situation’. There were no rules when you play football on the street, no coaches to protect you. Because I was so advanced I used to play with the big kids and they used to try to kick me all over the street. I learned to be tough, and you can only learn that if you grow up in that environment. Football saved me.”
Alexis Sanchez of Chile celebrates scoring his team’s first goal during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil round of 16 match between Brazil and Chile at Estadio Mineirao on June 28, 2014 in Belo Horizonte, Brazil.