BERLIN - VfL Wolfsburg's Brazilian defender Felipe says he is determined to return to top-flight football despite revealing in a report on Tuesday that he has suffered from a minor stroke.
The 27-year-old says only the quick reactions of Wolfsburg's physiotherapist Michele Putaro saved his life after suffering a Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA), often refered to as a mini-stroke, while at home in July as he watched a World Cup match.
"I felt dizzy and knew something wasn't right," he told Bild.
Felipe contacted Putaro who drove straight to the defenders home and raised the alarm before the Brazilian was rushed to a specialist clinic.
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"You can perhaps say that Michele saved my life," said the centre-back who has played in the Bundesliga for both Wolfsburg and Stuttgart after spending five years at Portugal's Nacional.
"I didn't have a clue in that moment what was the matter with me.
"It was only a few days later that we knew what had happened."
The attack, caused by a lack of blood flow in a part of his brain, left Felipe with a weakness on his left side, which has since been cured, but he still has a problem with his left eye.
The blood-thinning tablets he currently needs to take means top-level sport is out of the question for the immediate future.
"Of course, it's not good that I have to take a long break from football, but the most important thing is to be healthy," he said.
"I am certain that I will return to professional football," he said."There is no reason for me not to believe in my comeback on the pitch."
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