Which are Juventus Top Former Brazilian Players ?
Danilo joined Juventus this week in a deal that saw Portuguese left-back João Cancelo move in the opposite direction to Manchester City. The ex-Real Madrid man can play in a number of positions but is most comfortable at right-back. The Old Lady could line-up with a pair of Brazilian full-backs with Alex Sandro on the opposite flank.
Alex Sandro has the Brazil left-back slot to himself with Marcelo out of favour and Filipe Luís’ career winding down at Flamengo. Juve have a rich tradition with Brazilian players. Ahead of Danilo at right-back, Douglas Costa currently patrols the Juve right flank after spells at Bayern Munich and Shakhtar Donetsk.
Two seasons ago, the legendary Dani Alves spent a season in Turin after leaving Barcelona. A Serie A title and a Coppa Italia make up his vast litany of trophies. However, Juventus’ history with Brazilian players goes back a long way. Chinesinho (‘Little Chinese’) was part of the Old Lady’s 1966-67 Serie A triumph. Fellow midfielder Emerson was capped 73 times by Brazil between 1997 and 2006.
He was a runner-up in the 1998 World Cup and missed the Seleção’s 2002 World Cup triumph through injury. He had mixed fortunes at Juventus, winning league titles in both of his seasons there, but both were subsequently removed from the club due to the Calciopoli scandal. He moved to Real Madrid in 2006 when Juve were relegated to Serie B as punishment for Calciopoli.
Midfield hardman Felipe Melo moved to the club from Fiorentina in 2009 after an impressive display for his country in the 2009 Confederations Cup, but he could not recapture his form with the Viola and left for Galatasaray in 2011. Likewise, centre-half Julio César joined Juve from Montpellier in 1990 with a big reputation.
Despite a four-year sojourn at Juventus, but despite winning the UEFA Cup in 1993, his tenure was largely regarded as a failure. Even less illustrious was the Juventus career of the highly rated defender Lucio, who earned rave reviews for his performances with Bayer Leverkusen, Bayern Munich and Inter. However, injuries took hold and he only made four appearances between signing in the summer of 2012 and having his contract terminated in December 2012.
The Old Lady’s first Brazilian was part of the 1932-33 title winning side. Italian Brazilian Pedro Sernagiotto, also known as Ministrinho, held Italian citizenship despite being born in São Paulo. He even played for the Italian national side during the ‘30s. There is hope for the future in the shape of Matheus Pereira, the 21-year old currently starring for the U-23s.
Matheus came through the academy at Corinthians but left for Turin when he turned 18. He has since spent loan spells at Bordeaux and Paraná in his native Brazil, he made 3 Serie A appearances last season. Overall Juventus’ history with Brazilian players has been very mixed, a trend Danilo and Matheus Pereira will hope to change. They will be happy to match Alex Sandro’s haul of 4 Serie As and 3 Coppa Italias.