Soccer player Emerson Royal from the English top club Tottenham Hotspur was the victim of an armed robbery in his home country Brazil. This was confirmed by the police in the city of Americana in the state of São Paulo on Friday. The incident happened around 3 a.m. on Friday morning while exiting the New Trips nightclub. Accordingly, the perpetrator called for Emerson’s valuables and threatened him with a gun.

It is only thanks to coincidence that the 23-year-old national player remained unharmed, as he confirmed on social networks. Emerson took a photo with an off-duty police officer who asked him to take a picture just before the crime. As the robbery began, the police officer identified himself and drew a pistol. At least 25 shots followed, as the responsible police station announced. According to local media reports, the alleged perpetrator was hit in the back and operated on in the hospital on Friday morning.

After the robbery, Emerson published the photo with the police officer on Instagram – and thanked his rescuer. “God sends angels to earth (…). I will be eternally grateful to you. You were fundamental to me being here today,” wrote the Premier League pro. He got away with the shock and was able to make a statement to the police, accompanied by his father.

A little later he got back his watch and a chain that the attacker had initially stolen from him. “It was horrible and felt like something out of a terror film. Nobody deserves that,” father Emerson de Souza told the Brazilian newspaper Globo Esporte.

Emerson Royal joined Tottenham from FC Barcelona last summer and made 41 competitive appearances for Spurs this season. The right-back hails from São Paulo and is currently spending his home vacation in the region.