Between 2004 and July 2010 he played for Bundesliga side Schalke 04. He joined the club for a €2.6 million transfer fee from VfB Stuttgart. There, he formed a formidable central defence alongside Mladen Krstajić, boasting a formidable aerial ability and a capacity for leadership that earned him the role as team captain from the 2006–07 season until the summer of 2010. Although not a regular for the Brazilian national side, he was part of the team that won the 2004 Copa América.
On 5 July 2010, his contract with Schalke was canceled and he signed three days later on 8 July 2010 an one-year contract with Al-Rayyan Sports Club. earning approximately €6.5 million per year.