The phrase was one of the most controversial in football history, and it also served as a great way to describe a player whose lifestyle was not particularly sporty, but on the field was a true competitive machine. “I can go to a party every day, but as long as I score goals, you should be happy.” Romario is considered one of the greatest players to have played for FC Barcelona. If you want to learn more about him, read this biography of Romario (January 29, 1966, Brazil).

Summary of Romario’s life

The index

  • Brazilian beginnings and Dutch departure

  • Barcelona’s idol and world champion Romario

  • Leaving Barcelona and returning to Brazil

The journey begins in Brazil and ends in the Netherlands

As a middle-class child, Romario inherited a great love for soccer from his parents. Due to a lack of influence, his father and mother were Flamengo fans, but they could not get their son a test there, so he joined Vasco da Gama’s youth team, where he scored many goals. When he was 19 years old, he made his debut in 1985.

Between 1985 and 1988, he won the Brasileirao twice and was crowned tournament top scorer twice, the first time someone so young has achieved it since Pelé. A number of European teams were interested in his potential, but he was ultimately signed by PSV Eindhoven from the Netherlands.

He would become champion and top scorer of the tournament in the Netherlands, an accomplishment he would repeat two more times. As a Canarinha, he wins with absolute superiority the Copa América in 1989, despite Argentina and Maradona competing against the Brazilians.

He spent five seasons in the Dutch team, winning three top scorer titles, three leagues, and two cups, scoring 165 goals in just 163 matches. It was during these years that he became one of the top references of a Brazilian National Team seeking its fourth World Cup.

Barcelona’s idol and world champion Romario

The president of PSV announced in 1993 that FC Barcelona was negotiating to hire the Brazilian striker. In order to dominate the continent for the remainder of the decade, Barça paid 10 million dollars to the Dutch for Romario. His best season is here, according to him.

During the 1993-1994 season, Romario made his First Division debut, the most spectacular debut after Mario Kempes. As a result of his goalscoring abilities, his team won the Pichichi Trophy as top scorer with 30 goals, and he set a new record for hat-tricks by scoring three goals in the same game five times against first-class teams such as Real Madrid, Atlético de Madrid, and Real Sociedad.

Among his most memorable achievements was that classic between Real Madrid and Barcelona in which he scored three goals and stunned the world with a brutal play in which he gave Alkorta a “cow tail” to later score against Paco Buyo, Madrid’s goalkeeper who fell 5-0 that day. Thus, he was invited to play in the 1994 World Cup in Brazil.

Despite not being as “pretty” as those of other generations, Romario’s 1994 World Cup performance would be legendary, with goals that demonstrated his efficiency and forcefulness in front of a team full of stars. During that tournament, the canarinha won its fourth World Cup and the player received the World Cup Golden Ball and Fifa’s World Player award.

Return to Brazil after escaping Barcelona

He put soccer on hold for weeks after winning the World Cup due to abusive celebrations. When he arrived at Barcelona for training 21 days late, there was some discomfort in the Catalan team because he had lost another European Cup final the previous season, when it was alleged that the player had held back to get ready for Brazil.

As a result, the club’s managers and player were extremely annoyed, so they decided to lower the player’s performance to sell him in January 1995. It is his dream to play for Flamengo, the team he has supported since he was a child. The performance of Romario was never the same again, and although his goalscoring potential remained intact, his seasons were irregular. In his 30s, he returned to Flamengo after a season with Valencia.

After playing in lower level teams until he was 42 years old, Romario announced his retirement from professional soccer in 2008 to focus on politics.

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