Player Profile – DecoJune 2, 2007
Full name: Anderson Luis de Souza
Birthplace: Sao Bernardo, Brazil
Date of Birth: 27th August 1977
Previous Teams: Nacional Sao Paolo, Brazil; Corinthians, Brazil; Benfica, Portugal; Alverca, Portugal; SC Salgueiros, Portugal; Benfica, Portugal.
National Squad/Number of Appearances: Portugal/44+
Deco was signed to Barcelona in 2004. Viewed as one of the cornerstones of the Barca team, Deco’s mix of Brazilian flair, his astute footballing brain and commitment to both attack and defence soon made him a favourite with the fans. Deco can play just about anywhere in midfield and is especially adept in playmaker roles behind the striker, in central midfield and on the right.
- Although born in Brazil Deco assumed Portuguese nationality and currently plays for the Portugal national team.
- His first match for Portugal was against his home country of Brazil. Deco scored in the match giving Portugal their first win over the Brazilians in 37 years.
- The Porto fans nicknamed him ‘Magico’ and ‘SuperDeco’ because of his skills on the ball.
- Prior to joining Barcelona, Deco won the Champions League with Porto in 2004 where he was voted as the best player in the final against Monaco. He also won the UEFA Cup (2002-3), the Portuguese League (1998-9/2002-3/2003-4), the Portuguese Cup (1999-0/2002-3) and the Portuguese Supercup (1998-9/2002-3).
- He has won two Spanish Supercups (2005-6/2006-7), two League Titles (2004-5/2005-6) and the Champions League (2005-6) with Barcelona. Prior to joining the club he won the French title (2000), the French Supercup (2000) and the French League Cup (2003) with AS Monaco.
- The player is one of an elite number of players to have won the Champions League with two different clubs.
- When Deco won the UEFA Best Midfielder award for his Champions League performance in 2005-6 he became the first player to win the award twice having won it previously with Porto.
- In his career the player has also won the FIFA World Cup Golden Ball (2006), the UEFA Champions League MVP (2003-4), the Portuguese Footballer of the Year (2004) and the South American Sportsman of the Year (2006).
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