Zizinho

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For the 1980s footballer also known as Zizinho, see Gerardo dos Santos.
Zizinho
Personal information
Full name Thomaz Soares da Silva
Date of birth (1921-09-14)September 14, 1921
Place of birth Niterói, Brazil
Date of death February 8, 2002(2002-02-08) (aged 80)
Height 1.72 m (5 ft 7 12 in)
Playing position Attacking Midfielder
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1939–1950 Flamengo 172 (88)
1951–1957 Bangu Atlético Clube
1957–1959 São Paulo Futebol Clube
1959–1960 Uberaba Sport Club
1961–1962 Audax Italiano
National team
1942–1957[1] Brazil 53 (30)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).

Thomaz Soares da Silva, also known as Zizinho (Portuguese pronunciation: [ziˈzĩɲu]; born October 14, 1921 – died February 8, 2002), was a Brazilian football player, who played as an attacking midfielder or winger for Brazil's national team. He came to international prominence at the 1950 World Cup, where he scored two goals. He was lauded as a complete player, renowned for his incredible array of offensive skills such as dribbling, passing, shooting with both feet as well as dead ball ability and extraordinary vision.[by whom?]

Born at Niterói, Rio de Janeiro, he played for Flamengo, Bangu, São Paulo FC, Audax Italiano of Chile among others teams. In Flamengo, he won state championships in 1942, 1943 and 1944.

In the 1950 World Cup he helped Brazil to progress to the final, but their surprise 2-1 defeat to Uruguay tarnished his reputation. Zizinho played a total of 53 times for his national team, scoring 30 goals. He turned down last minute invitations by the CBF to join first the 1954 world cup squad and then the 1958 squad, citing on both occasions that it would be unfair on the player being dropped at the last minute to make way for him.

Pelé always said that Zizinho was the best player he ever saw. "He was a complete player. He played in midfield, in attack, he scored goals, he could mark, head and cross."[2]

He came in 4th place in the IFFHS Brazilian Player of the 20th Century.

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