Rivaldo Vitor Borba Fereira Biography
Rivaldo Vitor Borba Fereira was born on the 19th of April 1972 in the Recife town of Brazil. Rivaldo has three brothers and one sister.
Rivaldo lost his father at a car accident the age of eight, his father’s dream was to see his sons play football. Rivaldo had an extremely poor upbringing in the favelas of the port town of Recife. His physical appearance still marks the poverty he experienced in his childhood: malnourishment caused bowleggedness and the loss of several teeth.
Pelé named Rivaldo in his 125 Greatest Living Footballers at a FIFA Awards Ceremony.
Rivaldo in Brazil
Rivaldo signed professional terms at the age of 16 in 1989 with Santa Cruz after impressing local scouts in a junior tournament. He joined Brazilian first division club Mogi-Mirim in 1991.
Rivaldo signed for Corinthians in 1993 and made his international debut in December 1993, scoring the only goal in 1-0 victory over Mexico in a friendly international.
Rivaldo signed for Palmeiras in 1994 and won the Brazilian league championship on the same year. He won the São Paulo state championship with Palmeiras in 1996.
Rivaldo In Europe
Rivaldo moved to Spain in 1996 and joined Deportivo La Coruña. Rivaldo then transferred to Barcelona in August 1997.
In his first season at Barcelona, he was the second best goal scorer with 19 goals in 34 matches, as Barcelona won The Double of La Liga championship and Copa del Rey.
Winning a second Spanish league title with Barcelona in 1999, Rivaldo won both FIFA and World Soccer magazine’s World Player of the Year awards. He was voted European Footballer of the Year by France Football magazine.
In June 2002, Barça decided to release Rivaldo from his contract a year before it was due to expire and he signed a three-year contract with the Italian Serie A club A.C. Milan. He left the star-studded Milan after a season of very few starts.
Rivaldo in Olympiacos and AEK in Greece
After a brief stint back in Brazil with Cruzeiro (11 games played, 2 goals scored), Rivaldo signed with Olympiacos for the 2004-05 season and won the Greek championship and the Greek cup (23 games played, 12 goals scored).
Rivaldo scored some memorable goals in his first season at Olympiacos, including a fantastic effort in the cup final with a well placed lob from a difficult position close to corner flag. Rivaldo also scored 2 memorable free kicks during the season, the first was in the local derby vs the other Athens giant, Panathinaikos and the second against English club Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League.
On May 12, 2007, Olympiacos offered him a lower contract and Rivaldo announced that he would leave Olympiacos over failed contract extension talks and neglectful management. After more than 2 weeks of negotiations, Rivaldo signed on with the Super League club AEK FC on May 29, 2007, making the acquisition arguably the best in AEK’s history. In AEK Rivaldo will play under his former Barcelona FC manager Llorenç Serra Ferrer. Rivaldo finished his Olympiakos career with 43 goals in 81 games played.
Rivaldo with Brazil National football team
An attacking midfielder, he is known for his play-making capabilities, as well as his technique. He is also known for his bicycle kicks.
Rivaldo, bad moments in his football career
Rivaldo received a large fine from FIFA because of his actions in a group stage match of that event against Turkey. During an encounter with Turkey defender Alpay Özalan, Alpay kicked a ball in his general direction while the referee was looking away.
Rivaldo held his hands to his face as if he had been hit there by the ball, and the referee was successfully deceived into sending Alpay off. Television replays proved that Rivaldo was not hit by the ball in the face, but in the body.
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