The Five Best Brazilians to Play in the Premier League
We’ve seen some brilliant foreign footballers come to the Premier League over the years. For the most part, the most memorable players in the history of the league probably have been from abroad. Here we take a look at the Brazilian players who have headed to these shores to ply their trade in the top flight of English football. There’s been a few, some good, some bad but the five below have probably made more of an impact than most.
Gilberto Silva joined Arsenal from Atletico Mineiro in 2002 and went on to make over 240 appearances for The Gunners in all competitions, scoring 24 goals and setting up 10. His style of play could be described as un-Brazilian like as he was more industry and hard work than he was flair. Silva was a part of the famous ‘Invincibles’ team and also went on to help Arsenal make the Champions League final in 2006 as well as collecting two FA Cups. The Brazilian was also the first player to score Arsenal’s first goal at The Emirates.
Juninho or Juninho Paulista as he was sometimes referred to had 3 spells in English football, all of them with his beloved Middlesbrough. You could say that the diminutive midfielder was the first Brazilian to prove a success in the English Premier League. His play style added an excitement not seen before during his spells on Teeside and in 2002, during his last stint at the club, he helped Boro to win their first major trophy, the league cup. He’s held in such high regard by the Boro fans that he was named their greatest ever player. He managed 31 goals and 3 assists in 130 games.
A lot has been written about Coutinho recently in the press about his desire to join Barcelona but one thing’s for sure, he’s a Brazilian who has been mightily impressive since arriving in the Premier League. His record speaks for itself as he currently has 43 goals and 38 assists from 185 games, proving just how integral he has been at Anfield since he signed from Inter back in 2013. Although he is not going to score the most goals in the league, with Unibet.com.au having priced him as 125/1 to be the Top Goalscorer this season; his talent and influence have not gone unnoticed. The 25 year old has been courted by the world’s best and that is testament to just how well he has performed consistently in England’s top flight.
Chelsea’s Willian is a Brazilian who has come good for them on so many occasions it’s too hard to leave him out of the top 5 list. He joined the club in 2013 from Anzhi and hasn’t looked back since. He has made 189 appearances for the Stamford Bridge outfit, scoring 31 times and setting up 29 for teammates. He’s helped Chelsea to two league titles and even during their struggles, his form has always been consistently good, showing his quality week in week out. When Chelsea have needed someone to change the game for them, it’s more often than not been Willian to step up to the mark.
Ramires joined Chelsea back in 2010 and went on to play 261 games for the club, scoring 37 goals and assisting 27. You could say at times that the Brazilian wasn’t really as indispensable to the club as others in the squad but he went about his job on the pitch quietly. The box to box midfielder was the man who scored a vital goal as he helped the club to the Champions League final, which they went on to win. He was also instrumental in them winning the Premier League title in 2014/15 too and this makes him one of the best Brazilians to ever grace the division.