|Full name||Nilton dos Santos|
|Date of birth||16 May 1925|
|Place of birth||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil|
|Height||1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)|
|Playing position||Left back|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).
Nilton dos Santos (Brazilian Portuguese: [ˈniwtõ ˈsɐ̃tus]; born 16 May 1925) is a Brazilian former association footballer who played defender. Born in Rio de Janeiro, he was a pioneering left back, being one of first full backs to participate in the offensive game. He played all his professional club career for Botafogo de Futebol e Regatas.
He was called "The Encyclopedia" because of his knowledge of the sport of football. He was world class both at defending and attacking and possessed very good technique. Nilton was a key player in defence during the 1954, 1958 and 1962 World Cup finals (he was also in the Brazilian squad for the 1950 finals, but made no appearances) and became famous for scoring a magnificent goal in the 1958 tournament when Brazil played Austria. Dribbling his way through the whole field, he finished with a superb shot, driving his coach Vicente Feola crazy (he kept on insisting for Nilton to retreat to the defensive field, but was ignored until the goal was scored).
Pelé named him in his "top 125 greatest living footballers" in March 2004.
Nilton Santos played for only 2 teams in his professional career; Botafogo de Futebol e Regatas and the Brazilian national team collecting 75 caps and scoring 3 goals; he is regarded as the best left wingback in the history of the game.
- [Official Website http://www.niltonsantos.com.br/] (Portuguese)
- Nilton Santos – FIFA competition record
- Profile (Portuguese)
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