Who is Roberto Carlos? - The Brazilian Legend
Who is Roberto Carlos?
Roberto Carlos is a Brazilian footballer. Throughout his lengthy career with Real Madrid, Carlos solidified himself as the best left-back in the history of football. Roberto Carlos scored 66 goals from the left-back position making him one of the most offensive left-backs in history. Roberto Carlos has brought success to both club and country over his 25 years on the pitch.
Roberto Carlos De Silva Rocha was born in Garca, Sao Paulo, Brazil in the spring of 1973. Carlos started playing football at an early age but did not play as part of an organized club until he was signed by Uniao Sao Joaoa in 1991. The future left-back started as an attacking forward. After a short time on the lower level team, Carlos was called up to the Brazilian National Team at the age of 19. After a single season with Sau Joaoa, Carlos was put on loan to Atletico Mineiro. It was here where he first played football in Europe. The Mineiro B team competed for the Ciutat de Lleida trophy, and Carlos contributed a small number of minutes in the tournament. After his year-long loan was up, Carlos was traded to Palmeiras. In his two seasons with the club, he contributed to two Brazilian league championships.
European Club Football
Roberto Carlos began his European football career in 1995 when he was transferred to Inter Milan. Despite scoring 5 goals in 30 appearances at left-back, the club was ultimately unsuccessful in Serie A, finishing in the middle of the table. After his single season with Inter Milan, it was clear that a dispute with manager Roy Hodgson was causing problems for Carlos. Hodgson was adamant that Roberto Carlos move to the winger position. Roberto Carlos was confident that he was a left-back and left the team in 1996. His first two seasons with Real Madrid
Roberto Carlos was then given a home at Real Madrid. Carlos started 1996 as Real's go-to left-back. In his first season with the club, Carlos scored five goals from the left-back position. He contributed to his first La Liga championship at the end of his first season with the club. His second season at Real Madrid was just as fruitful. Carlos and his club started the 1997 season by lifting the Supercopa de Espana. They would later go on to win the UEFA Champions League that season. Carlos contributed seven goals throughout all competitions with the club that year and earned the Silver Award for FIFA World Player of the Year. Carlos helped his club win the Continental Cup the following year. In the 1999-2000 season, Real Madrid dominated European football once again by winning their second UEFA Champions League during Carlos' tenure at the club.
Roberto Carlos continued to add to the success of the club by scoring 10 goals in the 2000-01 season from the left-back position. Carlos' offensive and defensive prowess earned him and his club the second La Liga title of his long and prosperous career. The following season was the pinnacle of European dominance at Real Madrid. Carlos contributed outstanding defense and explosive offensive play to win his team another UEFA Champions League. In the final of this match, Carlos assisted the great Zinedine Zidane in the best goal to ever be scored in the tournament. Classic Real Madrid football shirts from this time bring back vivid memories of the pair's outstanding attack. Real would go on to win the Intercontinental Cup that year as well as the UEFA Supercup. This season was the peak of Roberto Carlos' individual career as he was a runner up for the Ballon d'Or and named to both the UEFA Team of the Year and UEFA Defender of the Year titles.
The following season Roberto Carlos saw his fourth La Liga championship with the club. 2003 is also the year that Carlos helped his club lift their 3rd Supercopa de Espana. Carlos was also named as part of the UEFA Team of the year for the second consecutive season. In his final season with the club, Carlos was able to go out a champion, securing his La Liga title for Real Madrid.
Roberto Carlos is a Real Madrid legend. He currently holds the record for most appearances in La Liga by a foreign-born Real Madrid player. In his time with the club, Roberto Carlos appeared in 584 matches and scored 71 goals from his primary defensive position.
After 11 years at Real Madrid, Roberto Carlos signed to Turkish club, Fenerbache in the summer of 2007. His first time playing with Fenerbache was for the Turkish Supercup. The team won with the help of Carlos' solid defence. He would score for the first time on Turkish grass later that summer with an impressive diving header. An injury later that season kept Carlos from contributing to his side who lost the Turkish title. Carlos would contribute to a second Supercup for Fenerbache before announcing his leave in the winter of 2009.
Roberto Carlos returned to his birthplace in 2010 with a contract to play for Corinthians in the Brazilian Serie A. Carlos played in Brazil for two seasons scoring impressive goals from set-pieces. Carlos was released from the team by his own request after receiving death threats from fans after losing in the Copa Libertadores de America to a Columbian team.
After moving away from Brazil, Roberto Carlos agreed to a two-year contract with the Russian Premier League team, Anzhi Makhachkala. While at Anzhi, Carlos took on the role of a defending midfielder and assumed the captaincy after his first month with the club. During his year-long stint at Anzhi, Carlos scored a total of 5 goals for the club before assuming the role of caretaker coach. He retired from club football in 2012.
The Brazilian National Football Team
Roberto Carlos began playing for the Brazilian National football team at the age of 19 in 1992. He played left-back for seven games in the 1998 World Cup. The team made it all the way to the final and fell to France. In 2002, Roberto Carlos contributed heavily to all of Brazil's World Cup Matches. He helped his team lift the World Cup after defeating Germany by two goals. In 2006, Roberto Carlos played his final game for the Brazilian National Football team. The team lost in the semi-finals of the World Cup to France. Carlos cited heavy criticism from Brazilian fans as his reason for not returning to the team.
The Trophy Cabinet
Throughout his career, Roberto Carlos has been the recipient of some of the most prestigious awards in football. Most importantly, his team victories fill the majority of his trophy cabinet. During his time at Palmeiras, Carlos earned two league titles back to back. The majority of his honours came during his historic tenure at Real Madrid. It was here that Carlos contributed to four La Liga titles. Carlos and his club lifted the Italian Supercup three times and won the Intercontinental Cup Twice. Carlos contributed heavily to three UEFA Champions League titles and was named UEFA Defender of the Year twice. Roberto Carlos and Real Madrid hoisted the UEFA Supercup in 2002. Roberto Carlos also has two Turkish Supercups to his name.
As a member of the Brazilian National Football Team, Carlos lifted a World Cup in 2002. His time on the Brazilian national team also earned him two Copa Americas and an Umbro Cup.
Individually, Roberto Carlos' racked up three Bola de Pratas. He was awarded the silver FIFA World Player of the Year award in 1997. He was named to the FIFA World Cup All-Star Team twice. In 2002 he was a runner-up for the Ballon d'Or and he won a Golden Foot award in 2008.
Famous Teammates – Galacticos
Roberto Carlos shared the pitch with legendary world-class talent during his time at Real Madrid. This group of expensive global all-stars was called the galacticos after the policy that allowed them all to be on the same club team.
Zidane and Carlos had a connection for goal-scoring throughout their time at Real. Carlos assisted Zidane in his most iconic goal during the Champions League. The two played against each other in two world cups.
The Midfielder was another one of Carlos' favourite targets. The two contributed to Real Madrid's iconic play style of lockdown defence and aggressive attack.
Another iconic member of this Real Madrid side, David Beckham. Beckham and Carlos collaborated on many points off of set pieces that established Real Madrid's reputation of being able to score from anywhere.
Where Is He Now?
After retiring from play in 2012, Carlos started his coaching career immediately. He was the interim manager at Anzhi Makhachkala for a small period after he retired from the club. Roberta Carlos then jumped from club to club until 2015 when he retired from coaching. Carlos now works as a football ambassador in Brazil.
Roberto Carlos is arguably the best left-back in football history. His ability to play lockdown defence and score goals made him a staple for both club and country. Classic Brazil football shirts from 2002 are reminiscent of Carlos' dominant contribution to a World Cup and his classic Real Madrid football shirts are iconic. Roberto Carlos is a legend on the pitch.