Rio de Janeiro, Aug 8 IANS | 3 months ago

Former Manchester City midfielder Elano has admitted the assault of teammate Andre Santos by Flamengo fans contributed to his decision to leave the club.

The 33-year-old confirmed his departure Thursday with four months left on a loan deal from Brazilian rivals Gremio, reported Xinhua.

His announcement comes less than a month after Santos, who joined Flamengo from Arsenal last year, was kicked and punched by a group of fans after the team's 0-4 defeat to Internacional.

"My family was the most important thing," Elano told a press conference in Rio. "That episode with Andre Santos made a difference. But I can't judge millions of Flamengo fans on the basis of a few."

Elano capped 50 times for Brazil, struggled with injuries and played just four league matches after arriving at Flamengo in January.

"I want to be useful and I wasn't," he admitted. "If I am criticized while playing, that's one thing. But I was not even on the pitch.

"I have managed to achieve many things in my life but I'm sorry that things haven't worked out here."

Flamengo are currently last in Brazil's Serie A standings with 10 points from 13 matches.

(Posted on 08-08-2014)

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