Roberto Carlos Biography

Tue 30 March 2021 | 11:30

Let’s take a look at one of the best left backs and a legend of Brazilian football in this Roberto Carlos biography.

When it comes to the role of a left-back and the best players that have played that role, Roberto Carlos’ name is one of the first that comes to mind. Known for his exceptional pace and powerful left-footed shots, which is why he is called Bullet Man, Roberto Carlos brought a new dimension to the role of a left back. Originally a forward, Carlos brought his attacking sensibilities to the role of the left back. Apart from that he was also a great tackler which coupled with his speed made it so that he would rarely be caught out of position and could contribute immensely to his team's defense.

Roberto Carlos made a name for himself playing for Palmeiras and eventually moved to Inter Milan and then Real Madrid, where he stayed for eleven years winning 3 Champions League and 4 La Liga titles.  He was part of one of the greatest generation of Brazilian players and represented his country in 3 different World Cups, being runners up in the 1998 World Cup and winning the competition in 2002. he is the 2nd most capped Brazilian player of all time with 125 caps. He was also runner-up for the FIFA Player of the Year award in 1997 and Ballon d’Or in 2002. Now that the brief introduction is over, let’s take an extensive look at Roberto Carlos lifestory and career in this

Roberto Carlos biography


Roberto Carlos Biography

In this brief Roberto Carlos bio, we take a closer look at how he became one of the best left backs ever, starting from his days playing football in his home country to the height of his powers in Real Madrid:

Roberto Carlos Information

So let’s start Roberto Carlos bio with a general information about his physical attributes and his position on the pitch:

Roberto Carlos Bio

  • Full Name: Roberto Carlos da Silva Rocha

  • Nickname: El Hombre Bala (The Bullet Man)

  • Profession: former footballer and manager

Roberto Carlos Physical Stats

  • Height: 1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)

  • Eye Color: Brown

  • Hair Color: Black

  • Weight: 73 kg   

Roberto Carlos Football Information

  • Positon: Left Back

  • Professional Debut: 1991

  • Jersey Number: 3, 6

Roberto Carlos Date of Birth and Personal Info

  • Date of Birth: 10 April 1973

  • Birth Place: Garça, São Paulo, Brazil

  • Nationality: Brazilian

Roberto Carlos Early Life

Born in the town of Garça in the Sao Paulo state of Brazil,

Roberto Carlos date of birth

is 10 April 1973. His father was Oscar Da Silva and his mother Vera Lucia.

Roberto Carlos childhood

was marred with poverty and it forced him to work from an early age to support his family.

Although he was already working in the textile industry by the age of 12. Like many Brazilian kids football would be Roberto’s escape from reality. he started attracting local clubs’ attention and joined the local team Uniao Sao Joao as a youth.

Roberto Carlos Profile

We will take a look at Roberto Carlos’ career as a footballer in the different teams that he played throughout his career in this section of Roberto Carlos biography and starting with his time in his native Brazil:

Football Career

First let’s take a look at Roberto Carlos’ club career as well as his time with the Brazilian national team:

Early years in Brazil


As we mentioned above, Roberto Carlos started his professional career at Uniao Sao Joao and made his professional debut in 1991. His performances over his 2 season spell at this Serie B side was so impressive that

Atletico Mineiro

took Carlos on loand and with Mineiro, Carlos travelled for a tour of Europe, getting his first taste of European football. Also it was here that he was first called up to Brazil’s national team.

After 2 seasons with Uniao Sao Joao, Carlos joined one of Brazil’s best teams by then,


. There, with players like Cafu and Rivaldo, Roberto Carlos flourished and won two back to back Serie A titles as well as state league titles with Palmeiras. By the time his third season with Palmeiras came around in 1995, a lot of European teams were after him and Carlos decided to join Inter Milan in the summer of 1995 for a reported fee of €3.5 million.

Inter Milan & Real Madrid


Roberto Carlos started his

Inter Milan

career really well as he scored from a free kick on his debut but the rest of the season wasn’t as successful as he was mainly deployed as a winger rather than his favored left-back position. A point that Inter’s then-manager, Roy Hodgson, insisted on. Inter finished the season as 7th in the Serie A and upon further discussions with the club owner Massimo Moratti about his position in the team, Carlos was convinced that he had to leave Inter.

It was then that Real Madrid swooped in and took advantage of the situation by bringing an unhappy Roberto Carlos to Santiago Bernabeu in the summer of 1996 with a reported fee of €6.5 million. Roberto Carlos’ 11-year stay at

Real Madrid

started with a bang as they won the 1996-97 La Liga title and went on to win the Champions League the following season. in between these two titles, Carlos was runner-up for the FIFA World Player of the Year and was also nominated for a Ballon d’Or, which would be a regular occurrence for most of the years he played for Real Madrid.

At Real Madrid, Roberto Carlos overtook Alfredo di Stefano and became the most capped foreign player in La Liga with 370 appearances. He helped Real Madrid win another La Liga title at the turn of the centure in the 2000-01 season before delivering a memorable performance in the Champions League final of the 2001-02 season by providing an assist to Zidane’s infamous goal in the final.

Later that year he also won the World Cup with


and was narrowly beaten by his friend Ronaldo in the race for Ballon d’Or, getting 145 votes which was a record for a defender up to that time. He would win 2 other La Liga titles before ending his 11-year stay at Real Madrid in the 2006-07, with his last goal for the club being the title decider.



The next chapter in

Roberto Carlos life story

would see the legendary left-back join the Turkish Superlig champions,


, in 2007.

Carlos won the Super Cup on his first match but due to an injury lost the final games of the season where the title was decided and went to Fenerbahce’s rival,



Despite his promise to bring back the title in his second season, he wasn’t able to do so and eventually ended up leaving Fenerbahce after two and a half seasons and returning to Brazil after 15 years.

Later years


Roberto Carlos joined


in 2010, linking up with his friend and former teammate, Ronaldo. He enjoyed a relatively good season with Corinthians, with the highlight of the season being his incredible Olimpico goal from the corner kick against Portuguesa with outside of his left foot but after being threatened following Corinthians’ elimination from the Copa Libertadores, Roberto Carlos asked to leave Corinthians and terminated his contract.

On 12 February 2011, it was announced that Carlos had joined the Russian side,

Anzhi Makhachkala

for a 2 and a half season contract worth around €10 million. He was made captain in his first season and was deployed mainly as a defensive midfielder. Later that season he was also appointed as the temporary caretaker of Anzhi following the sacking of their former manager.

Roberto Carlos’ time with Anzhi was marked with two incidents of racism, one against

Zenit Saint Petersburg

and one against Krylia Sovetov Samara. At both incidents a banana was thrown near where he stood. Carlos left the pitch after the incident against Samara.

In August 2012, Anzhi’s manager Guus Hiddink confirmed Roberto Carlos’ retirement from football after 21 years of professional football, most of which was spent at the highest level. Although Carlos would later come out of retirement to play a few matches for Delhi Dynamos, a club that he managed.

International Career


Roberto Carlos nationality

is Brazilian and he was given his debut in 1992, even though he was playing for a rather small Serie B side at the time. Carlos’ first major tournament with Brazil the 1996 Olympics, where he won the Bronze medal with players like Rivaldo and Ronaldo. The following year Roberto Carlos helped Brazil win the Copa America and Confederations Cup.

As part of one of the greatest Brazilian generation of players and one of the best national teams ever, Carlos helped Brazil the 1998 World Cup final, which they lost to France, and then followed that with another Copa America win in 1999.

In 2002, Roberto Carlos and Brazil finally achieved what they wanted the most and won the World Cup. He would play for Brazil in yet another World Cup in 2006 but they were heavily criticized for being knocked out by


, after which Roberto Carlos retired from International football.

Style of Play

Originally a forward player, Carlos was moved to the left back position early on his career. At Palmeiras, he and his compatriot, Cafu, basically developed how a modern full-back should operate. The two are considered one of the best of all time in their respective positions.

Carlos’ incredible speed, stamina and agility allowed him to bombard the oppositions right flank with his runs. With great technique and ball control as well as being a good crosser of the ball, Carlos was operated like a winger in attack. In defense, once again his speed was the thing that helped him the most as he was rarely caught out of position because of it. Carlos was also a phenomenal tackler and he almost always won in a one-on-one situation.

One of most important aspects of Carlos’ style of play was his trademark long range shots. His infamous free kicks, in which he’d hit the ball with the outside of his left foot, have been known to travel at insanely high speeds with one being reported of traveling at the speed of 169 km/h. in a friendly against France in 1997. Roberto Carlos scored an infamous free kick with the outside of his left foot from 40 yards out which may very well be the best free kick goal of all time!


Roberto Carlos is generally considered to be one of the best, if not the best, left backs of all time. He is also one of the greatest Brazilian players of all time, having experienced 2 World Cup finals as well as winning several Champions League trophies and league titles in Europe.

Real Madrid’s former manager, Vicente del Bosque, claims that Roberto Carlos could on his own cover the whole left flank. A sentiment that is shared by Real Madrid’s current left back, Marcelo, who recalls how he idolized Carlos not only on the pitch but for the man he was outside of it as well.

Roberto Carlos has been included in the FIFA World Cup All-Star Team for the 1998 and 2002 World Cups as well as being the runner-up for the FIFA Player of the Year in 1997. He was also the runner-up for the Ballon d’Or and is also part of the FIFA 100 as well as numerous other awards for being one of the best defenders of his generation.

Goal Celebration

As far as goal celebrations go, Roberto Carlos rarely celebrated his goals in a special way. He tended to jump in the air and raise his fists and then celebrated his goals with his teammates.

Roberto Carlos Outside Football

Roberto Carlos is currently the club ambassador for Real Madrid and resides in Spain. He holds a Spanish-Brazilian dual citizenship since 2005.

In an interview with the Spanish outlet, AS, Carlos claimed to have lived a simple life, especially in his Real Madrid days, compared to his teammates.

Although he has had his fair share of excitement in his life too, like when he received a Bugatti Veyron for his birthday when he played for Anzhi or the time he was robbed at gunpoint when doing a radio show in 2005.

Roberto Carlos Personal Life

Our Roberto Carlos biography wouldn’t be a complete without mentioning his personal life. So read on as we take a look at Roberto Carlos life story, relationships and philanthropy in this

Roberto Carlos bio


Family, Children and Relationships

When it comes to family life, Roberto Carlos may be a little strange, since the former Brazilian superstar has 11 Children with 7 different women!

He has even become a grandfather at the age of 44. But he has been accused of neglecting his children, which we’ll get into later.

As far as his current personal life goes, it’s to be noted that he is Real Madrid’s ambassador and lives in Spain.

Roberto Carlos religion

is Christianity and he doesn’t have a particularly strong political leanings or views.


Like many former players, Roberto Carlos has taken part in many charity matches that raise funds for different foundations and causes. He is also the ambassador for the international children's social program Football for Friendship.

Carlos regularly takes part in Real Madrid Legends charity matches as well as being part of Soccer Aid charity match a couple of times.

As a club ambassador, he has helped in holding various charity events for Real Madrid, like the one they did to raise funds for the fight against Coronavirus in May of 2020.

Legal Issues

Roberto Carlos has had his fair share of legal issues. The two biggest legal issues that he had to deal with were his domestic problems with his former partners, and mothers of his children, over not paying their alimony and allegations of him using illegal substances and doping during the 2002 World Cup.

Back in 2018, one of Carlos’ former partners, Brazilian Barbara Thurler, filed a case against him over not paying the alimony for his 2 Children and this prompted two more of Carlos’ former partners to come forward with similar claims as well. Thurler’s case was the most serious as it resulted in an arrest warrant for Carlos but it seems that the matter was resolved out of court.

About his doping allegations though, Roberto Carlos was this time the one that threatened legal actions after Mail and handful of similar tabloids accused him of doping during the 2002 World Cup. But the situation never went to court as the publications paid Roberto Carlos in damages and settled the issue.

Roberto Carlos Career Statistics

It’s time to review some statistics in this section of Roberto Carlos biography, both for the clubs he played at and the Brazil national team:


Roberto Carlos biography isn’t complete without his general statistics in the clubs that he played at. Carlos started his career in the lower leagues of Brazil, getting his debut in 1991 for the Uniao Sao Joao. He played in 66 games, scoring 5 goals, before he joined Palmeiras in 1993. There he became part of a very successful team and established himself as a world class left back, having played 162 games for them in which he scored 16 times.

His time at Palmeiras, attracted attention from Europe's elite clubs and so Carlos joined Inter Milan in 1995. After a somewhat unsuccessful season with Nerazzurri, where he played 34 matches and scored 7, Carlos left Inter for Real Madrid in a career defining moment.

Roberto Carlos went on to represent Real Madrid for 11 years, making 527 appearances and scoring 69 goals. With 16 goals in the

Champions League

alone, Carlos has become the top goal scoring defender in the competition. Roberto Carlos then decided to leave Real Madrid in 2007, joining the Turkish side Fenerbahce, where he stayed for 2.5 seasons making a total of 104 appearances in which he scored 10 times.

He then stayed a year with Corinthians in his home country, making 61 appearances and scoring 5 goals, before returning to Europe in 2011 where he joined Anzhi in Russia. He made 28 appearances for Anzhi in the single season he was with them and scored 5 goals before he retired from football at the end of 2011-12 season. he made a return to playing football in 2015 in a player-manager role at Delhi Dynamos but his return was short lived and he retired once again after 3 matches for Dynamos.


Making his debut for Brazil in 1992, Roberto Carlos has become Brazil’s 2nd most capped player behind Cafu, with 125 caps and 11 goals to his name. he has helped Brazil reach 2 World Cup finals, one of which they won.


Roberto Carlos has managed 3 different teams in his relatively short managerial career between 2013 and 2015. His longest period of managing a team was with


, where he managed the Turkish side in 59 games with a 38%-win rate.

He then spent 6 months as the

Akhisar Belediyespor

with an abysmal 25%-win rate in his 20 appearances.

And lastly he managed and also played for Delhi Dynamos between July of 2015 and December of 2015. He managed them for 16 games and had a 43%-win rate. He hasn’t since managed another team.

Roberto Carlos Honors

In the final section of Roberto Carlos biography, we take a brief look at his achievements, either team or individual achievements from his days at Palmeiras to him being a part of the Galacticos.

Roberto Carlos made his professional debut in 1991, playing for the Serie B side, Uniao Sao Joao. His performances there caught the eye of Palmeiras and Carlos joined them after two seasons with Uniao. At Palmeiras, alongside players like Cafu and Rivaldo, Roberto Carlos got his first taste of success as he won the Brazilian Serie A and the state league consecutively on his first two seasons with the club.

Midway through his third season with Palmeiras, Inter Milan came for Carlos and he didn’t turn them down. Although his time at Inter was short, and he only stayed with them during the 1995-96 season, it was the logical next step in his career. And it proved to work out quite well since, Real Madrid became interested and eventually signed Carlos a year later in 1996.

At Real Madrid, Roberto Carlos started his journey of becoming one of the greatest players of all time. He won the La Liga in his first season as well as winning the Champions League in his second season. later he became part of the infamous Galacticos and became one of the best Real Madrid players of all time by winning 4 La Liga titles, 3 champions League trophies and 2 Intercontinental Cups.

Carlos left Real Madrid at the age of 33 in 2007 and went on to play for Fenerbahce, Corinthians, Anzhi Makhachkala and Delhi Dynamos. The two Turkish Super Cups he won with Fenerbahce would be his last pieces of silverware.

Being part of one of the best generations of Brazilian footballers, Roberto Carlos made his debut for the Selecao in 1992 and took part in 4 Copa America tournaments, 3 World Cups, the 97 Confederations Cup and the 96 Olympics. He has helped Brazil win 2 Copa America titles in 1997 and 1999 as well as a Confederations Cup in 1997 and a Bronze Medal in the 1996 Olympics but more importantly he was part of two Brazil teams that reach the final of the World Cup in 1998 and 2002. They lost the 1998 final but Carlos was instrumental as Brazil won the 2002 World Cup.

On individual level, Roberto Carlos has been runner-up for both the Ballon d’Or and FIFA Player of the Year award in 2002 and 1997 respectively. He has also been featured in the World Cup All-Star Team twice in 1998 and 2002. He is also a part of FIFA 100 as well as being named UEFA’s Defender of the year twice in 2002 and 2003. And on that note we have to end our

Roberto Carlos biography

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source: SportMob