Top 10 Brazilian Footballers of All Time

Brazil is home to some of the world’s greatest footballers, with many players competing for clubs in the different European and American leagues. According to football fans from around the world, these are the greatest Brazilian football players of all time.

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Brazil’s most famous football player ever, Pele, hails. But who else on this list of Brazil’s greatest soccer players makes it? Let’s check it.

The best football players from Brazil ever

1. Pelé

pele celebrates goal
Image source:goal.com

The Brazilian forward was the greatest example of a period in which football just started to become the sensation of the world it is today. We can safely say Pelé is the true founder of what we know as the Emperor of Sports today. King Pelé is getting a big credit for being one of nature’s most amazing freaks who have ever played in any sport.

Without having played at its best during the sixties, had he played during this period, Pelé would now be one of the most talented players in modern days. Watching some of his compilations of abilities is more than enough for us to realize what a physical skill and intelligence he possessed, Pele was one of the most talented athletes ever to live.

2. Ronaldo

ronaldo brazil goal celebration

As competitors to Ronaldo, you might name Pele, Maradona or Messi, but one thing that distinguishes him from them is his powerful persona. The Brazilian Ronaldo has already dominated a few of the big leagues in Europe. Ronaldo has an impressive success that others, including Messi, Maradona, and Pele, can only think of. Having won several titles with PSV, Barcelona, Inter Milan, Real Madrid and Milan, including two World Cups 1994 and 2020, he is one of the best football players who ever played for Brazil.

3. Sócrates

socrates brazilian footballer
Image source: scotsman.com

As Brazil’s 1982 World Cup coach Tele Santana died just over five years ago, team captain Sócrates remembered the scene in the locker room following their elimination in the second group stage by Paolo Rossi’s Italy.

There were sadness and outbursts, utter despair and frustration as the media were searching for the justifications.

In the face of the turmoil, Santana sat calmly, proud of his mates and the magnificent game they had played – now recalled all over the world with incredible love. We had done their best shot to it.

Sure, the campaign may have been going on for a long time but what memories they leave behind. Such a philosophy could serve as the captain’s epitaph.

4. Romário

romario celebrates world cup 1994

He won the Golden Ball in the 1994 World Cup as the most outstanding performer, after assisting Brazil to win the championship. Romário won two state titles in four seasons with the club and scored 73 goals in 123 matches. He was the top goal scorer in the competition, chosen for the Brazilian team that competed at the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games and Brazil took the silver medal. Brazil won the Copa América in 1989, with Romário scoring the only goal against Uruguay in the final.

5. Garrincha

Garrincha brazil

To others, few figures are better linked to that than Garrincha, maybe the last and finest of the amateur factory or worker footballers turned professional, a man cherished by Brazil as a nation and one who reflected the game spirit in the world. To know how Garrincha became so widely known, you have to go back to the country’s somewhat contradictory sports beginnings.

Although Afro-Brazilians and mulattos in the lower class were not permitted to participate or even watch the games, they were able to establish their own impromptu games, and football became a central characteristic of Brazilian culture.

6. Ronaldinho

ronaldinho brazil celebrates

This Brazilian player could have won fewer titles than any player and spent fewer years at the height of his abilities but his talent was exceptional.

Kevin-Prince Boateng relates amazing stories of Ronaldinho only being able to reach the crossbar three times in a row during practices.

He gushed, “We wondered how it was possible there was so much talent in one body!”

7. Rivaldo

Image source: bleacherreport.net

In 1997, FC Barcelona invested $25.7 million on acquiring Rivaldo as a backup for Ronaldo, who had moved to another club. Rivaldo helped Barcelona win the Spanish League championship that year, an achievement that the team continued in 1999.

He was a leading scorer for the league in 1997 and 1998. Rivaldo helped guide Brazil to the final of the World Cup versus France in 1998 while the Brazilians lost 3–0. He was a main component of the successful bid Brazil made to win the Copa América of 1999.

8. Roberto Carlos

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Image source: soccergator.io

The free-kick Roberto Carlos scored past Fabien Barthez at Le Tournoi in 1997 would be simple to devote a whole post to. The Brazilian has had a very good career, winning the World Cup once and the Champions League 3 times, and maybe just as importantly he could very, very, really well kick a football.

9. Kaká

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We should not underestimate the phenomenal talent he has. Ricardo Kaká was, without doubt, the greatest player in the world for a short amount of time. At the 2007 Ballon d’Or ceremony, the Brazilian playmaker was remembered as such, beating by a large margin Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi, the two stars who would conquer the game for the next decade. He won the 2006-07 Champions League, the 2007 Super Cup and the Club World Cup 2007 with AC Milan. The part of Milan consisted of some fine players, but Kaká was their heartbeat and driving power.

10. Zico

zico brazilian footballer

Arthur Antunes Coimbra, known as Zico, is one of the biggest soccer stars in the history of Brazilian football. He was also known for his clever attacking moves and engaging in free kicks as “white people.” Zico played for the Brazilian national squad three World Cups from 78 to 86 and won millions of people’s hearts. Pele, the leader of football said, “Zico is the only one who resembles my playing method”.

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