“One of the biggest blasts of hot air, which I’ve been hearing ever since I was an adolescent, is the idea that top level sport is a good place to learn and develop ethical and moral values.
"It never was. Ambition, the desire to be a hero and to make lots of money are usually much stronger.”
So wrote 1970 Brazil great Tostao in Sunday’s version of his always interesting column, a twice weekly space where football is analysed by someone of great knowledge and intelligence who loves the game but is even more fascinated by the subtleties and contradictions of the human being.
“There are exceptions,” he continues, before plunging into depressing accounts of athletes doping themselves to gain an illegal advantage.