rich, famous, ready to rest

rich, famous, ready to rest

The self-proclaimed “best soccer influencer in the world,” Brazilian internet sensation Luva de Pedreiro, is rich and famous at 20, but needs a break from unexpected celebrity, he says.

Known for posting videos of his graceful juggling skills, ecstatic goal celebrations, and other footballing antics so theatrically over-the-top that they’ve earned him superstar fans like Neymar, Angel Di Maria, and Ronaldinho, Luva, whose real name is Iran Ferreira. , grew up in the poor rural community of Quijingue, in the northeastern state of Bahia.

With little more than a die-hard love of soccer, an outsized personality, and a cell phone, he became an overnight sensation in Brazil and beyond, amassing more than 40 million total followers on Instagram. TikTok and YouTube.

But in a story that also speaks to the sometimes brutal world of social media, weeks after signing what he called “the biggest contract of my career” with Adidas, Luva announced Tuesday that he has stopped posting videos online and said he wants to “live my life”. normal life.”

“I will finish the work that I have contracted with the brands that I have signed with, but after that I will not make any more videos,” he said, adding that he had deleted dozens of posts from Instagram.

When rumors surfaced that the move was either a marketing ploy or the result of a falling out with his new coach, Brazilian futsal legend Falcao, Luva went back online Thursday to ask for a break from the spotlight: “I can’t get not a single minute of peace,” he said in an Instagram story.

– ‘Incredible energy’ –

The news went viral in Brazil and even drew comments from Spanish giants Barcelona, ​​who said on TikTok that they would miss Luva’s “incredible energy”.

Famous for his ever-present black gloves, or “luvas” in Portuguese, hence his nickname, and his favorite catchphrase, “Receba!” — which roughly translates to “Take that!” – Luva is perhaps best loved for his goal celebrations, which have inspired imitations of soccer stars such as Bayern Munich’s Serge Gnabry and Joshua Kimmich.

In an interview with AFP just two days before announcing their breakup, Luva was happy and proud of his work, declaring: “I’m going to be an influencer for the rest of my life.”

He said he was about to launch two new projects, without giving details.

Advisors said his need to step back was due to overload and unspecified personal issues.

It arrived a few days after he had made a commercial tour of Europe and Asia.

Luva had also recently signed a new contract with Falcao, after a break with his previous manager, Allan de Jesus, which ended in a complicated legal battle.

– Price of fame –

Luva’s videos are often shot on the dusty soccer fields of his home state, where he shows off his skills, clowns around and jokes in fast-paced slang.

It turned out to be a magic recipe.

One particularly viral video from March 2021 racked up over 100 million views.

It has been a life-changing journey for Luva, who was once impoverished and now lives in a posh neighborhood of Recife, on Brazil’s northeastern coast, and travels the world rubbing shoulders with soccer royalty.

“Dude, I never expected to make money from this. I thought there was no future in what I was doing,” he told AFP.

“But thank the Lord, I’m enjoying the fame and the work.”

Clearly, though, it hasn’t been all fun and games.

It’s not an uncommon story among new social media stars.

“Young people who unintentionally enter this world, as is the case with Luva de Pedreiro, quickly encounter the reality of the market, of contracts and advertising deals, which is very different from having fun on social media,” Isaac says. Karhawi, author of the book “From Blogger to Influencer”.

“A lot of influencers have to deal with the haters, with the cancel culture, which can lead to various mental health issues,” he says.

“What happened (with Luva) shows that it is much more complex than just having millions of followers.”

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