Formiga (footballer)

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Formiga (08), meio-campista, DSC00910-2012-26-07.jpg
Personal information
Full name Miraildes Maciel Mota
Date of birth (1978-03-03) 3 March 1978 (age 36)
Place of birth Salvador, Bahia, Brazil
Height 5 ft 3 in (1.60 m)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
São José Esporte Clube
Number 8
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1993–1997 São Paulo
1998 Portuguesa
1999 São Paulo
2000–2001 Santa Isabel
2002 Santos
2003 Independente
2004–2005 Malmö FF Dam
2006 New Jersey Wildcats 12 (13)
2007 Jersey Sky Blue 6 (1)
2007 Saad
2008 Botucatu
2009 FC Gold Pride 16 (0)
2012-present São José
National team
1995-present Brazil 98 (14)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Miraildes Maciel Mota (born 3 March 1978, in Salvador, Bahia), commonly known as Formiga (Portuguese for ant), is a Brazilian footballer who plays as a midfielder, currently for São José Esporte Clube. Formiga holds many international records as a member of the Brazil women's national football team, being the only player present in all Olympic Games tournaments of women's football since the first edition at the 1996 Summer Olympics, and sharing with Birgit Prinz a record five appearances at the FIFA Women's World Cup.


Born in Salvador, Formiga begun playing football at the age of 12. She cites Dunga, captain of the Brazilian team that won the 1994 FIFA World Cup as the biggest influence on her playing style.[1]

Formiga played in the Swedish women's first division as a member of Malmö FF Dam, and for both Santa Isabel and Saad in her homeland of Brazil.[2] Formiga was the first overall pick for the newly inaugurated Women's Professional Soccer league in the United States in the 2008 WPS International Draft, she was chosen by FC Gold Pride of Santa Clara, California.[3] Formiga started in 15 games for Gold Pride in their inaugural season in 2009. The following season, Formiga played for Chicago Red Stars, joining compatriot Cristiane.[4] In 2011, Formiga returned to her country to play for São José.


Formiga first played for Brazilian women's national team at the age of 17, as part of the squad for the 1995 FIFA Women's World Cup, playing mostly as a substitute. The following year, during the inaugural tournament for women's football at the 1996 Summer Olympics, she became a regular starter in the Brazilian team. Formiga and Pretinha were the only two Brazilian players who participated in the first four Olympic Games tournaments of women's football, winning the silver medal in both 2004 and 2008 - both finals lost to the United States.[5] She also returned in the 2012 tournament, being the only player present in all five editions of the Olympics tournament.[6]

In the World Cup, Formiga joined Birgit Prinz in being the only player to appear in five consecutive tournaments from 1995 to 2011.[7] Along the way, Formiga's Brazil reached third place in 1999 and runner-ups to Prinz's Germany in 2007.[5]

Formiga also won the gold medal in two editions of the Pan American Games, 2003 and 2007,[5] while winning the silver in 2011 after losing to Canada.[8]


External links[edit]