Ivan Zamorano Biography

Mon 15 February 2021 | 18:30

Considered to be amongst the top three Chilean footballers of all time, in this article we take a look at Ivan Zamorano biography.

Ivan Zamorano, born on 18 January 1967 in Santiago, Chile, is a Spanish-Chilean former footballer. He is widely regarded as one of his country's all-time greatest footballers. He was the captain of the Chilean national team and fourth all-time top scorer (after Alexis Sánchez, Marcelo Salas and Eduardo Vargas), with whom he scored 40 goals, 34 at the senior level (17 in World Cup qualifiers, 8 in Copa América and 9 in friendlies) and 6 in the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, where he was the top scorer in the men's football tournament. He also works as a commentator for TNT Sports in Chile.

Zamorano has played for clubs in










, where he wore the jerseys of Cobreandino,



FC St. Gallen


Sevilla F.C


Real Madrid

, winning many club awards and titles during all these years.

Famous for his goalscoring abilities and superb aerial play, he scored 350 official goals throughout his career (including 27 in the Chilean Second Division and 6 in the Olympic national team), making him the second-highest scorer in Chilean history, after Osvaldo Castro (358) and ahead of Carlos Caszely (286). He is also the top Chilean scorer in Europe, with 201 goals scored in official tournaments.

Best remembered for the Za-Sa duo he formed with Marcelo Salas in the Chilean national team's forward line, one of the most famous duos in football in the 20th century, he was the " top scorer of the Conmebol Qualifiers for the 1998

World Cup

" with twelve goals, the highest number in one edition. The main scoring skill of Zamorano was his heading ability, being recognized by specialists as one of the most outstanding headers in history.

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All You Need to Know About Ivan Zamorano Biography

He was chosen by the IFFHS as the 40th best South American player of the 20th century. Along with Elías Figueroa, he is one of two Chileans included in the FIFA 100 List of the greatest living footballers of the 20th century.

Ivan Zamorano Information

As we know him much better now, in this section of

Ivan Zamorano biography

we want to share some general information about him such as

Ivan Zamorano nationality

, stay tuned.

Ivan Zamorano Bio

  • Full Name: Ivan Luis Zamorano Zamora

  • Nickname: Bam Bam

  • Profession: Professional Footballer

Ivan Zamorano Physical Stats

  • Weight: 73 Kg

  • Height: 1.80 m

  • Eye Color: Dark Brown

  • Hair Color: Black

Ivan Zamorano Football Information

  • Position: Striker

  • Jersey Number: 9

  • Professional Debut: 1983

Ivan Zamorano Date of Birth and Personal Info

  • Date of Birth: 18 January 1967

  • Birth Place: Santiago, Chile

  • Zodiac Sign: Capricorn

  • Nationality: Chilean

Now stay tuned to this section of

Ivan Zamorano biography

as we want to share some information about

Ivan Zamorano childhood


Ivan Zamorano Early Life

Ivan Zamorano was born in Santiago on 18 January 1967. He was the eldest son of the young married couple Luis Zamorano and Alicia Zamora, who lived in the La Legua neighbourhood of San Miguel. "You could say that I was born with a ball, because my father played football, and when I was one and a half years old he had already given me one. So when I was learning to walk I also learned to hit the ball," said Ivan himself.

At the age of three, his parents had decided to move to Villa México, located in the Maipú district, a district that would become the natural setting for his childhood and part of his teenage years, and where his passion for football was awakened.

From kindergarten to the eighth grade he studied at school 447, located in Villa Mexico, then he finished his secondary education at the French Lycée. Throughout his school life, he was an outstanding sportsman.

When he was thirteen years old, his father died of fulminant appendicitis on 24 June 1980 at the Posta Central in Santiago. Luis Zamorano's death not only threw him into a deep depression but also strengthened an unbreakable relationship with his mother and uncle, José Zamora, his first coach and the person who played the paternal role until his nephew emigrated to El Salvador to join Cobresal's first team at the beginning of 1985.

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Ivan Zamorano Profile

Ivan Zamorano trained at the Cobresal club in El Salvador, Chile. The city of El Salvador is an unusual city: it is a former miner's camp located at an altitude of 2 600 meters which became a city in the 1950s. The Cobresal club also has a fairly young history as it was founded in 1979. Its first title was a division 2 championship in 1983. And it was during the 1984-85 season that Ivan Zamorano made his professional debut at the age of 18. Cobresal was then a surprising team that was at the forefront of the Chilean championship.

As a result, it was not easy for the "helicopter" to make a place for itself and it was loaned to the Trasandinoandino club (at the time Cobreandino) in division 2 of Chile to improve his game. This young man worked his heart out judging by his stats with 27 goals in the league. He came back during the 1986-87 season to his training club and was going to blow up everything. After a full season, the young Zamorano made 43 appearances for the first team and scored 22 goals. But the most important Cobresal reached the final of the Chilean Cup against the giants Colo-Colo.

And Cobresal was only going to make a mouthful of the reigning national champion by winning 2-0 with Ivan Zamorano's opener and a fox's goal from the penalty area. Zamorano helped the Cobresal club win its first, and only, major trophy with this 1987 Chilean Cup.

With such a promising start to his career, Zamorano opened the doors of Europe, but curiously enough he landed in Switzerland at St. Gallen before moving to Spain at FC Sevilla and then Real Madrid where he became one of the top scorers in Europe.

St. Gallen

Meanwhile, his performances for the miners began to arouse the interest of big European clubs and foreign businessmen. One of the latter, Italian Vinicio Fionarelli, purchased Zamorano and brought him to the Italian club, Bologna.

The transfer was worth more than 350,000 dollars and Zamorano began his journey to the Old Continent in late 1988. Problems with the Bologna coach, who was discriminating against Zamorano because of his physical appearance, led the young striker to join the Swiss team of Saint Gallen, playing in a third division, but which would serve as the ideal academy for the Chilean striker's athletic and sporting development.

In the Swiss team, Zamorano became a hit and the magazine Güerin Sportivo dubbed him "Ivan il Temmible". A natural goalscorer, he shone for three seasons and caught the eye of the highly demanding Spanish football. Specifically the eyes of Vicente Cantatore, the coach who at that time was in charge of Sevilla.

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Saint Gallen received 2.5 million dollars for the player, the largest sale in the club's history to date. Zamorano signed a four-year contract with Sevilla. In Spain, Zamorano was reunited with his mother and sister and began to write the most important chapters of his career.

The team's poor season and the inevitable injuries meant that Zamorano performed poorly in his first season (90-91), scoring only nine goals, and the following season he scored twelve. But once again he suffered two injuries that prevented him from being a regular starter. Despite all this, he aroused the interest of Real Madrid's coach, Benito Floro.

Now stay tuned in this section of

Ivan Zamorano biography

as we want to share some information about his Real Madrid career.

Real Madrid

Zamorano arrived in the Spanish capital to join the "Merengue" on 14 June 1992, after the Madrid giants paid five million dollars for his signature. In the La Liga that lasted until mid-1993, Zamorano scored 27 goals and was the second top scorer in the league. His fame grew and he was voted the best Latin American player in the competition.

Zamorano's goal contribution during the 93-94 season was very low and the management thought of selling him, but Zamorano fought for a second chance. The arrival of the Argentinian coach Jorge Valdano did not seem to be that chance, as he did not give him a starting place.

But the Chilean stepped up to the task, and every time he came on the pitch he scored goals, so many that he changed Valdano's mind. So much so that Zamorano was to be the hero of the Real Madrid side that went on to win the 94-95 league title. Zamorano, in addition to winning the league title, became the tournament's top scorer. With 28 goals, he became the "Pichichi" (top scorer). In 1996, his contract at Real Madrid was not renewed and he moved to Italy to join Italian giants

Inter Milan

, with whom he signed a contract until June 2001.

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Inter Milan

In 1996 his successful spell at Spanish football came to an end: Moratti's club Inter stepped in and brought him to Milan for 4 billion lire, becoming the first Chilean to wear the Nerazzurri shirt. The first season was all in all positive, with Ivan immediately becoming the undisputed idol of the fans, and it could not have been otherwise.

His modest beginnings will never be forgotten and he knew very well that every day you have to fight to deserve what you have. He probably doesn't even understand the meaning of words like contentment or arrogance: he was one of the ordinary people and would always remain so. The following season, paired with Ronaldo, he was truly amazing.

The famous second place in the

Serie A

and the UEFA Cup in Paris in the final against


where Ivan scored the winning goal was highlights of that season. After the season ended he took part with his national team in the 1998 World Cup in France and with Lazio's Salas he formed one of the strongest offensive pairs on the international scene.

While the arrival of Ronaldo at Inter did not deprive him of playing time, it did bring some friction over his shirt number. The Brazilian phenomenon had always worn the number 9 shirt, so much so that Nike had created a special brand, the R9. However, by the time he arrived at Milan, that shirt already belonged to the Chilean, so Ronaldo wore number 10 the first season.

The following season, under pressure from Nike, he asked Zamorano for the number 9, and Zamorano had no problem giving it to him, given the excellent relationship the two had established over the months. But Ivan didn't want to settle for just any number, as being a great goal scorer was part of his DNA. So he invented something that would go down in history: he chose number 18 and had '+' inserted between the two digits.

The message was clear: whatever shirt he wore, he would always remain a true striker, a number 9. The gimmick caused a stir, horrifying the purists, but his uniform sold like crazy: even today it is still one of the most sought-after on the collectors' market.

Zamorano remained a Nerazzurri player until 2001 and unfortunately, he didn't get much success on the field. He played with Djorkaeff, Baggio, Vieri and many other great stars with whom he never lifted another cup. As time passed he also saw the bench more and more often, but he did not remember a controversy or lack of commitment when called to action.

He closed his Nerazzurri career with 41 goals in 149 appearances and it was a period that would remain unforgettable for him. The city of Milan and the Inter fans will never be forgotten, they will always be part of his heart, so much so that on 22 May 2010 when his old teammate Zanetti lifted the

Champions League

in Madrid, he cried with joy in front of the television.

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After leaving Italy, Ivan had one goal left to reach, which he would achieve only two years later. From 2001 to 2003 he wore the Club America jersey in Mexico, where he continued to score plenty of goals and won the 2002 Clausura tournament. Now stay tuned in this section of Ivan Zamorano biography as we want to share some information about his Colo Colo career.


It was in 2003 that he finally managed to fulfil his greatest dream: for a few months, before hanging up his boots, he wore the black and white jersey so dear to his father, that of

Colo Colo

. Zamorano, at the age of 36, scored the last 8 goals of his career in 14 games, fulfilling the wish of his first fan, who would certainly have been proud of him.

Chile National team

At the age of just 20, he played in the 1987 Copa América in Argentina, where his team finished as surprising runners-up, including a 4-0 win over the Brazilians in Cordoba.

It seemed that Italy '90 could be his first World Cup appearance, but after that memorable match against the “Brazilians" in the qualifiers (the one with the "Condor" Rojas scandal), the Chilean qualification to the top event was not possible. In addition, the suspension of the Chilean team for USA '94 ended up “killing off" a good generation of players, who had finished third in the Sudamericano '91 played at home.

At the end of 1994 a new era began in the Chilean national team (under Nelson Acosta) and Zamorano was left as the only survivor of that "generation of '87", with the dream intact of playing at least once in a World Cup. And thanks to the emergence of a certain José Marcelo Salas and the backing of a good team behind him, Ivan managed to qualify for France '98 with the Chile National Team.

On French soil, he was unable to score goals, although he played in all four games for a Chile team that managed to get through the first round and then lost to Brazil in the Round of 16. After a fourth-place finish at the Paraguay '99 Copa America, "Bam-Bam" was able to get himself another great chance in 2000: to take part in the Olympic Games, after the historic qualification of the "Chile" against José Pekerman's "Dream Team" in the pre-Olympic games played that summer.

Zamorano not only took part in Sydney 2000 but also played five games, scored six goals and managed to win the bronze medal and the title of top scorer of the competition, something that filled him with pride and satisfaction in the final stretch of his rich career.

After wearing the national shirt 68 times (scoring 34 goals and often being captain) and saddened by the fact that his country had not made it to Japan-Korea 2002 World Cup, his last appearance in the red jersey came in a friendly against France on 1 September 2001, which ended in a 2-1 win for the South Americans.

Now stay tuned in this section of Ivan Zamorano biography as we want to share some information about his playing style.

Style of Play

Nicknamed El Terible and Bam-Bam, he was a fighting striker who was known for his headers, thanks to his considerable height and good timing, which compensated for his small stature; Zamorano himself stated that he had honed this particular skill as a child, practicing hitting a chandelier in the corridor of his house. He was also used to draw opposing defenders onto himself, opening up spaces for his teammates.


Ivan Zamorano is undoubtedly one of the best footballers in the history of Chilean football and some pundits and football fans consider him the best striker to ever play for Chile national team.

Goal Celebration

Ivan Zamorano has scored many goals during his career both on international and club level and although he didn’t have a signature goal celebration, one that we often saw from him was when he ran to the fans after scoring a goal with his arms open and shouting in joy.

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Ivan Zamorano outside Football

In 2007, he built a sports complex in his homeland, Santiago de Chile, called Ciudad Deportiva Ivan Zamorano, with the institution, which has a double lucrative and social purpose, has three soccer fields, 10 tennis courts, five paddle tennis courts, nine futsal courts, a heated swimming pool, a large gym and other facilities, until completing an area of ​​four soccer fields.

Nowadays, Ivan Zamorano spends his time in business, being the owner of an economic patrimony of more than 80 million dollars invested in the business holding company Del Inca Inversiones, the Ivan Zamorano Sports City, the Ivan Zamorano Foundation, the Pass Ball company, the high technology training company IT Training, numerous real estate investments in Chile and abroad, a private university project, etc. as well as continuing with some media appearances that serve to keep his name alive and at the same time, provide support in various campaigns and acts with social purposes.

Ivan Zamorano Personal Life

In this section of Ivan Zamorano Biography, we will take a look at his personal life and share some information regarding

Ivan Zamorano life story


Ivan Zamorano religion


Family, Children and Relationships

In February 2004, after a few months of media coverage, he broke up with Chilean model María Eugenia Larraín (Kena Larraín), just days before the wedding.

In 2005 he married the Argentinean model María Alberó with whom he had a daughter, named Mía Pascale. On November 28 of the 2007 his second son, he was born, named Ivan Mary

His wife has passed on her enthusiasm for the Argentinean club Independiente de Avellaneda to him. Zamorano himself occasionally sends his love to the "Reds" of Avellaneda through his social media, making him very much loved by their fans, even though he has never played for the club.


The internationally renowned Chilean footballer, Ivan Zamorano was appointed in 1998 as UNICEF National Goodwill Ambassador in Chile and constantly works on campaigns and activities to promote children's rights.

"As a UNICEF ambassador, I have had the opportunity to learn first-hand about the work that UNICEF does in Chile and I have been able to see the impact it has on the lives of many people. UNICEF works permanently to open spaces so that the perspective of children and adolescents is incorporated into public policies, in regional spaces, in educational establishments and in their own families. Only in this way can children exercise their rights.” Zamorano stated.

Legal Issues

There are no records on the media regarding any legal issues or disputes to his name.

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Ivan Zamorano Career Statistics

In this section of Ivan Zamorano biography, we will take a look at his career stats on the club and international level.


In 18 years of playing as a footballer between 1985 and 2003, Ivan Zamorano has played a total of 612 matches in all competition and scored 348 goals. The highlight of his club career was from 1992 to 2001 when he played for Real Madrid and Inter Milan.


During 1987 and 2001, Ivan Zamorano has played a total of 69 matches for Chile national team, scoring 34 goals. In 1997 alone, Ivan Zamorano scored 9 goals in 5 international matches for his country.

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Ivan Zamorano Honors

On club level, Zamorano has won many awards including Segunda División de Chile, Copa Chile,

La Liga

, Copa del Rey, UEFA Cup and Mexican Primera División among others.

He has also won the 2000 Olympic Bronze Medal in Sydney with Chile U23 national team.

Of his notable individual honors, we can mention Swiss Super League Best Foreign Player, EFE Trophy, La Liga Best Foreign Player, FIFA 100 and Pichichi Trophy among many others.

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source: SportMob