|Full name||Leonardo Lourenço Bastos|
|Date of birth||6 July 1975|
|Place of birth||Campos dos Goytacazes, Brazil|
|Height||1.69 m (5 ft 6 1⁄2 in)|
|Playing position||Left back|
|1997–1998||União São João||40||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).
He spent most of his professional career with Santos and Benfica, arriving at the latter at the age of 25 and winning eight major titles, winning the same amount with the former during his two spells.
Léo was born in Campos dos Goytacazes, Rio de Janeiro. Local-based Americano Futebol Clube gave him his professional debut in 1996, and the next year he moved to São Paulo with União São João Esporte Clube. Two seasons later he was bought by Sociedade Esportiva Palmeiras but, within six months, he was shown the door by coach Luiz Felipe Scolari.
Subsequently Léo joined Santos FC for R$1.6 million fee, quickly becoming an integral part of the team: in 2002, playing alongside the likes of Diego, Elano, Renato and Robinho, he won his first national championship, losing the following year's Copa Libertadores.
After having appeared in 201 official games for Santos, aged 30, Léo signed for S.L. Benfica from Portugal for an undisclosed fee, on a three-year contract. He made his top division debut on 18 September 2005 in a 4–0 home win against U.D. Leiria, and played in an average of 27 league matches in his first three seasons, but the club came out empty on major silverware.
Return to Santos
In 2008–09, Léo began suffering stiff competition for the left-back position from compatriot David Luiz. On 14 January 2009 he left Benfica and returned to Santos, continuing to display solid performances in spite of his age.
Léo was an important defensive unit during 2011 Campeonato Paulista, being also elected the best left-back of the tournament. He also featured in all 12 matches for the club in 2011 Copa Libertadores winning campaign, as well appearing in the 2011 FIFA Club World Cup Final, losing to FC Barcelona.
Léo featured only in four games during the 2012 Campeonato Paulista winning campaign, mostly due to the club's participation in 2012 Copa Libertadores. He also appeared 17 times in Brasileirão (all starts, 1441 minutes of action). In September, he suffered a knee injury.
After acting as a starter during the 2013 Campeonato Paulista, Léo was later replaced by new signing Eugenio Mena in the left-back, and changed his position to midfielder in August 2013. On 3 October he scored the last of a 3–0 home win over São Paulo, after coming off the bench to replace Thiago Ribeiro; however, later in the same month he suffered a knee injury which took him out of the remainder of the season.
On 24 April 2014, Léo was told that his contract (which was due to expire on 30 April) would not be renewed. He later revealed his retirement via Facebook, saying that he "even feeling in conditions to keep playing", he "can not see himself wearing other club's shirt". Léo also sent a "special thanks for the great nation of Santos's supporters", saying: "for them, I disputed every ball, I celebrated every victory and each one of the greatest titles".
Léo appeared in 455 matches for Santos, being into the club's history as the major title winner after the Pelé era and also being one of the ten players who most appeared with a Santos' shirt.
- (Correct as of April 3, 2014[update])
|Club||Season||National League||National Cup[i]||Continental[ii]||Other[iii]||Total|
Léo earned his first cap for Brazil on 31 May 2001, in the first game of the 2001 FIFA Confederations Cup, against Cameroon (3–0 win). He made five appearances during the tournament, with the national team finishing in fourth position.
- Série A: 2002, 2004
- Campeonato Paulista: 2010, 2011, 2012
- Copa do Brasil: 2010
- Copa Libertadores: 2011
- Recopa Sudamericana: 2012
Léo's career was often surrounded by controversy. In late 2010, after São Paulo FC failed to qualify to the 2011 Copa Libertadores, he said its supporters should be content "to watch" the competition on television.
The following year, when Santos won the continental tournament, he doubted of the capacity of its opponent in that year's FIFA Club World Cup, FC Barcelona, who went on to win it 4–0, however. In 2012, when Sport Club Corinthians Paulista won the Libertadores and qualified to the following Club World Cup, he displayed irony while describing the trouble caused by the club's fans at the São Paulo–Guarulhos International Airport, saying "who is used to go to train stations, should not go to airports".
In March 2013, Léo regretted having made the comments about Corinthians, stating: "I am already 37 years old. I'll be quiet from now on. I won't speak what I'm thinking anymore (laughs). [...] Controversies are over".
- "Placar Magazine - March 2001" (in Portuguese). Google Books. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
- "Leo comemora volta à Vila: 'É um privilégio voltar à casa onde despontei'" [Leo celebrates return to the Vila: 'It's an honour to return to the place where i grew up'] (in Portuguese). Globo Esporte. 21 January 2009. Retrieved 21 January 2009.
- "Santos domina seleção do Campeonato Paulista" [Santos rules Campeonato Paulista's All-Star team] (in Portuguese). Lance Net. 16 May 2011. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- Com lesão no joelho, Léo condiciona adeus ao futebol à recuperação (With a knee injury, Léo links retirement to recovery time); Globo Esporte, 25 September 2012 (Portuguese)
- Léo surpreende e anuncia troca de lateral por meio-campo no Santos (Léo surprisingly announces change of full-back to midfield in Santos); Globo Esporte, 18 August 2013 (Portuguese)
- Léo se recupera bem de cirurgia no joelho no Santos (Léo recovers well from knee surgery at Santos); O Estado de S. Paulo, 18 October 2013 (Portuguese)
- "Sem acordo com o Santos, lateral Léo anuncia aposentadoria aos 38 anos" [Without an agreement with Santos, full-back Léo announces retirement] (in Portuguese). Folha de S. Paulo. 24 April 2014. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
- "Léo é dispensado do Santos e anuncia aposentadoria aos 38 anos" [Léo is released from Santos and announces retirement at 38 years old] (in Portuguese). 24 April 2014. Retrieved 28 April 2014.
- Léo sobre São Paulo na Libertadores: 'Vai assistir' (Léo about São Paulo in Libertadores: 'They will watch it'); Lance Net, 18 November 2010 (Portuguese)
- Santos chega à Vila e já dá aviso ao Barça: ‘Vamos ver se são tudo isso’ (Santos arrives at the Vila and warns Barça: ‘Let's see if they are all that’); Globo Esporte, 23 June 2011 (Portuguese)
- Léo provoca corintianos: "Quem está acostumado com rodoviária não pode ir a aeroporto" (Léo provokes corintianos: "Who is used to go to train stations must not go to airports"); ESPN Estadão, 2012 (Portuguese)
- Léo 'light' abandona lado polêmico e critica supervalorização de garotos ('Light' Léo puts controversial side to rest and blasts kids' overrating); Globo Esporte, 16 March 2013 (Portuguese)
- Stats and profile at Zerozero
- Stats at ForaDeJogo
- Léo at National-Football-Teams.com
- Léo – FIFA competition record
- UEFA.com stats