The 2022/23 European football season is not over yet. But, even with a few weeks to go on the soccer calendar, no less than 23 Brazilian players have already had the opportunity to celebrate titles in the first division of national championships on the Old Continent this year.
The list only includes athletes who have already defended or who are still able to play for the Brazilian national team. Therefore, other names that changed from “football citizenship” to play for other countries, such as midfielder Richard Almeida, once again champion of Azerbaijan with Qarabag, are not part of the list.
In total, athletes born in Brazil or entitled to a local passport because of their ancestors (parents or grandparents) lifted the trophy in 11 different nations in Europe.
And this account only considers leagues that use the hegemonic calendar there and are in the final stretch of the season – the championships in locations further north, such as Sweden and Norway, usually start and end in the same year, that is, they are not inserted within the same season concept.
The club that most enshrined representatives of five-time world champion football in 2022/23, at least so far, is Zenit St. Petersburg.
Russian champion for the fifth consecutive season, the team has no less than seven Brazilian players in the professional squad: defenders Robert Renan and Rodrigão, left winger and captain Douglas Santos, midfielder Wendel and attacking midfielders Claudinho and Gustavo Mantuan, in addition to by Malcom, top scorer in the national competition. An eighth name, goalkeeper Ivan, was also part of the victorious campaign, but ended up returning to Brazil in the January window.
Due to the sanctions imposed on Russia in retaliation for the war in Ukraine, none of them will be able to participate in the next edition of the European Champions League despite the title they just won. If they want to play in the Champions League, they will need to transfer to clubs in another country.
Despite the high number of Brazilians who are already champions in Europe this season, the Canarinho nation did not celebrate (and will not celebrate) that much in the continent’s most important leagues.
In Spain, Barcelona raised the trophy with Raphinha as the only compatriot of Pelé, Garrincha, Romário, Ronaldo and co. In Italy, reserve defender Juan Jesus was alone at the end of Napoli’s three-decade fast.
Close to expanding its hegemony in England, Manchester City will reward only goalkeeper Ederson. Paris Saint-Germain must once again be French champions with Marquinhos on the field, Neymar in the medical department and nobody else. In Germany, the dispute is restricted to two squads without any Brazilian representation: Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund.
In the Champions League, the situation will not be much different. With the definition of this season’s finalists, the doubt is whether Brazil will see one of its athletes winning the most coveted interclub football trophy on the planet, Ederson (if City wins) or none (if Inter wins).
The Champions League decision, scheduled for June 10th and scheduled for the Atatütk Olympic Stadium, in Istanbul (Turkey), serves as a kind of informal closing of the club season in Europe. After that date, only matches for teams or less important teams that participate in lower divisions usually take place.
Brazilian national champions in Europe
SPAIN – Barcelona (1): Raphinha
ITALY – Napoli (1): Juan Jesus
NETHERLANDS – Feyenoord (2): Danilo and Igor Paixão
RUSSIA – Zenit Saint Petersburg (7): Claudinho, Douglas Santos, Gustavo Mantuan, Malcom, Robert Renan, Rodrigão and Wendel
GREECE – AEK Athens (1): Niclas Eliasson
AZERBAIJÃO – Qarabag (1): Júlio Romão
HUNGARY – Ferencváros (1): Marquinhos
POLAND – Raków Czestochowa (1): Jean Carlos
SLOVAKIA – Slovan Bratislava (1): Lucas Lovat
LUXEMBOURG – Swift Hesperange (1): Gustavo Hemkemeier
MALTA – Hamrun Spartans (6): Cláudio Murici, Eder, Ederson, Jonny, Tom and Vinícius Freitas
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