Bravo in action for Olympiacos in 2010
|Full name||Raúl Bravo Sanfélix|
|Date of birth||14 April 1981|
|Place of birth||Gandia, Spain|
|Height||1.76 m (5 ft 9 1⁄2 in)|
|2000–2001||Real Madrid C||7||(0)|
|2001–2002||Real Madrid B||40||(2)|
|2003||→ Leeds United (loan)||5||(0)|
|2009||→ Numancia (loan)||6||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 2 February 2015.
† Appearances (Goals).
Having played in almost all the youth ranks at Real Madrid, he went on to have a six-year spell in the first team, where he almost always served as a backup; however, it was during that period that he reached the Spanish national team, representing it at Euro 2004.
Bravo was born in Gandia, Valencian Community. After playing in his early years with two local clubs, he joined Real Madrid's youth system at 16. He was subsequently part of the Junior A side, and played for them two more seasons before arriving at the C-team in Tercera División, moving to Real Madrid Castilla in Segunda División B for 2001–02.
International call-ups of some players in the first team gave Bravo the chance for a La Liga debut against Athletic Bilbao at the Santiago Bernabéu, on 6 October 2001, and he played 71 minutes in a 2–0 win. He ended up training with the main squad – under Vicente del Bosque's management – very often, which eventually led to his permanent stay from the 2002–03 campaign onwards.
In January 2003, Bravo started an unsuccessful six-month loan spell at Leeds United. However, during Euro 2004 in which he appeared for Spain, Mick McCarthy, whilst commentating for the BBC, remarked that he looked a different player to the one in his Leeds stint; Roberto Carlos' presence, however, restricted his playing time in the Real main squad.
With a chance to retain UEFA Champions League status, Bravo signed a four-year contract with Olympiacos F.C. in mid-July 2007, with the transfer fee estimated in the region of €2.3 million while the player received an annual salary of €1.3 million.
After having appeared rarely for Olympiakos due to injuries, Bravo had a short return to Spain in the 2009 January transfer window, moving on loan to top level strugglers CD Numancia and having almost no impact in a relegation-ending campaign. He returned to the Piraeus side in the summer.
However, Bravo showed a much higher commitment than in the previous season and, thanks to his performances in pre-season, earned the starting left-back position over Leonardo and Didier Domi. He was released in May 2011 at the age of 30, after having contributed with 18 games to the national championship conquest.
On 31 August 2011 Bravo returned to his country and Madrid, signing for Rayo Vallecano which had just promoted to the top division. In the following summer, after having been rarely played in his first and only season, he joined Beerschot AC in Belgium for one year.
Bravo was capped for Spain on the under-16 level in 1997–98, when the national team won the Algarve Tournament. With the under-17s he played in the Nymburk International Tournament, scoring two goals in three matches.
Bravo's senior national team debut was on 21 August 2002 against Hungary, in a friendly. Subsequently he was a participant at UEFA Euro 2004, playing every minute in Spain's group stage exit campaign, against Portugal, Russia and eventual champions Greece (always as a stopper); he was not recalled since, receiving a total of 14 caps.
- Real Madrid
- UEFA Champions League: 2001–02
- Intercontinental Cup: 2002
- UEFA Super Cup: 2002
- La Liga: 2002–03, 2006–07
- Supercopa de España: 2001, 2003
- Bravo for Madrid youngster; UEFA.com, 28 August 2002
- Leeds sign Real defender; BBC Sport, 31 January 2003
- Olympiacos snare Raúl Bravo; UEFA.com, 13 July 2007
- Numancia swoops for trio; The Sports Network, 31 January 2009
- El Numancia se refuerza con Raúl Bravo, Marian Kelemen y Lago Junior (Numancia strengthens with Raúl Bravo, Marian Kelemen and Lago Junior); Marca, 31 January 2009 (Spanish)
- Raúl Bravo: "Es la situación perfecta para mí" (Raúl Bravo: "It's the perfect fit for me"); Marca, 1 September 2011 (Spanish)
- Raul Bravo tekent bij Beerschot AC (Raúl Bravo signs contract with Beerschot AC); Beerschot's official website, 28 August 2012 (Dutch)
- ΒΕΡΟΙΑ: Ενεργοποιήθηκε η "βομβα" με Ραούλ Μπράβο!!; Kerkida Sport, 27 August 2014 (Greek)
- BDFutbol profile
- National team data
- Raúl Bravo career statistics at Soccerbase
- Raúl Bravo at National-Football-Teams.com
- Soccerway profile