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Former Jiangsu Suning striker Jo voted best player in Brazil

Xinhua,December 05, 2017 Adjust font size:

RIO DE JANEIRO, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- Former Manchester City and Jiangsu Suning striker Jo won the Bola de Ouro on Monday, awarded to the best player in Brazil's Serie A championship.

Jo, whose full name is Joao Alves de Assis Silva, enjoyed a prolific season with 18 goals in 34 matches as Corinthians secured their seventh league title.

"I want to thank my wife, my dad... I started when I was 16 and I've gone through some tough times," Jo said during a ceremony in Sao Paulo.

The accolade capped a stunning turnaround for the 30-year-old, who lost his place in the Brazil squad after the 2014 World Cup as he struggled with poor form and personal problems.

The 30-year-old attributed his resurgence to a decision to quit drinking in late 2014.

"Things have improved. I want to thank my teammates and the club for believing in the changes that I've made," said Jo, who finished equal top of the Serie A scoring charts in 2017 alongside Fluminense's Henrique Dourado.

"I had some troubling times off the pitch but I got my life back on track and now I'm reaping the benefits," he added.

Brazilian Serie A team of the year

Goalkeeper: Vanderlei (Santos).

Defenders: Fagner (Corinthians), Balbuena (Corinthians), Geromel (Gremio), Carleto (Coritiba).

Midfielders: Michel (Gremio), Hernanes (Sao Paulo), Thiago Neves (Cruzeiro), Luan (Gremio), Dudu (Palmeiras).

Forward: Jo (Corinthians).

Coach: Fabio Carille (Corinthians).