Willian, a former Chelsea and Arsenal player, ended his contract with Brazil’s Corinthians on Friday and will return to play for England.
The Brazilian press linked Willian, 34, with Fulham in the Premier League.
Willian indicated in an interview on TV Globo that he left Corinthians due to the threats he and his family received on social networks.
“The reason for my departure is the threats I have suffered, my family too. They never stopped. When Corinthians lost and I didn’t do well in the game, my family received those threats and insults on social media,” said Willian. “I know it’s not the majority of fans, it’s a minority, but it has a huge impact, especially on my daughters.”
Corinthians confirmed that they terminated Willian’s contract, which would run until December 2023. A year ago he returned to the Sao Paulo club, where he began his career.
“My goal is to live outside the country. I have a British passport, so I can live there with my family,” Willian added. “I don’t have a club. I’ll decide once I’m there.”
Willian leaves Corinthians after a frustrating year at home, scoring just one goal in 45 games. The winger was recently plagued by shoulder and groin injuries.
Willian’s decision came days after Flamengo eliminated Corinthians in the Copa Libertadores quarterfinals.
Willian’s best time was with Chelsea, a team with which he played between 2013 and 2020. He won the Premier League twice and the Europa League once. But with Arsenal he was far from his best form, scoring just one goal.
The winger played two World Cups with Brazil in 2014 and 2018.