Abel Braga (left) with Lula in 2007
|Full name||Abel Carlos da Silva Braga|
|Date of birth||September 1, 1952|
|Place of birth||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil|
|Height||1.87 m (6 ft 1 1⁄2 in)|
|Playing position||Centre back|
|1976–1979||Vasco da Gama||37||(0)|
|1977||→ Las Vegas Quicksilvers (loan)||11||(2)|
|1994||Vitória de Setúbal|
|1995||Vasco da Gama|
|2000||Vasco da Gama|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Abel Carlos da Silva Braga (born September 1, 1952), known as Abel Braga, is a Brazilian football manager and former player. He played as a central defender during a professional career that started with Fluminense in 1968. Since his retirement in 1985, he has managed a number of clubs in Brazil and Portugal, including three spells at Fluminense. He has also managed French club Marseille, as well as Abu Dhabi club Al Jazira over two spells.
After his retirement as a player, he became a head coach, and worked at clubs such as Vasco da Gama, Internacional, Olympique de Marseille, Atlético Paranaense, Coritiba, Atlético Mineiro and Ponte Preta.
In 1988, at Internacional, he was runner-up of the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A after losing to Esporte Clube Bahia in the final match. In 1989, he came close to winning the Copa Libertadores, but the club ended up losing to Paraguay's Olimpia on penalties after conceding three goals in the return match at home. The two defeats left a stain on his career and would haunt him for many years to come.
In 2004, Abel Braga became Flamengo head coach, winning Taça Guanabara and Campeonato Carioca. He became most remembered, however, because Flamengo lost the Copa do Brasil to underdogs Esporte Clube Santo André, even though the final match was held in Rio de Janeiro, home of Flamengo.
In 2005, as Fluminense head coach, he won the Campeonato Carioca of that year. Abel finished the year, however, carrying the burden of two successive last-minute failures. Against all odds, Fluminense lost to underdogs Paulista of Jundiaí in the Copa do Brasil final match, under circumstances similar to the ones he faced the year before with Flamengo. Paulista, currently in the second division of the Campeonato Brasileiro, eventually qualified for the Copa Libertadores. Fluminense had another chance to qualify for the Libertadores, the most prestigious club football tournament in South America, by finishing the Série A among the top four. Even though Fluminense managed to lead the table for a few rounds, it failed again in the last match. A draw against Palmeiras would have been enough for the team to finish fourth, but they lost.
In the beginning of 2006, Abel transferred to Internacional of Porto Alegre to lead the team in the football tournament of Rio Grande do Sul. Grêmio emerged champions and Abel was criticized as an eternal runner-up. However, he may claim to have changed that image by winning the Copa Libertadores, one of the greatest achievements in the history of Internacional. The IFFHS ranked him as the sixth best club coach in 2006. He also led Internacional to win the 2006 FIFA Club World Cup.
After a spell managing Al Jazira, where he won the league during his last year, he came back to Fluminense. The club was struggling after Muricy Ramalho was fired. Despite having little time to fix the team, which was in the lower positions of the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A when he took over, he managed to finish the year in third place and qualify for the Copa Libertadores. In 2012, he led Fluminense to win the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A and was awarded as the best coach of the league.
On May 30, 2013, after the elimination of Fluminense against Paraguayan Club Olimpia from 2013 Copa Libertadores, competition that Flu were one of favorites, Braga was humiliated by rival fans in the arrival of club. At same time, fans of the Tricolor wrote on the walls of Laranjeiras, headquarters of club, "Fora Abel" (Abel out) and "Time Sem Vergonha" (Team without shame).
Braga returned to Al Jazira for a second spell in the summer of 2015, but parted company with the club in December after a string of poor results.
Braga rejoined Fluminense in 2017. He resigned in June 2018, after 18 months in charge.
On July 29, 2017, Braga's 18-year-old son, João Pedro, died after falling from the balcony of the family's apartment in the Leblon region of Rio de Janeiro. Braga was informed of his son's death whilst undergoing the final preparations for Fluminense's fixture against Ponte Preta the following day. Ponte Preta agreed to Fluminense's request to postpone the match, which was rescheduled by the CBF.
- Campeonato Carioca: 1971, 1973 and 1975
- Campeonato Carioca: 1977
- Atlético Paranaense
- Campeonato Paranaense: 1998
- Campeonato Paranaense: 1999
- Taça Guanabara: 2000
- Campeonato Carioca: 2005, 2012
- Taça Rio: 2005
- Taça Guanabara: 2012
- Campeonato Brasileiro Série A: 2012
- Al Jazira
- NASL profile
- Flu demite Abel mesmo sem opção de consenso para assumir o time
- "Abel Braga perde a paciência e descarta permanência no Internacional em 2015". iG. iG.
- McAuley, John (December 12, 2015). "Al Jazira, languishing in AGL relegation fight, part company with Abel Braga". The National. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
- "Fluminense coach Braga quits". Business Standard. Rio de Janeiro. June 17, 2018. Retrieved June 18, 2018.
- Bruno Braz, Leo Burlá e Pedro Ivo Almeida (July 29, 2017). "Morre o filho do técnico Abel Braga; jogo do Fluminense é adiado" [The son of coach Abel Braga dies; Fluminense's game is postponed] (in Portuguese). Retrieved January 1, 2018.
- "Com nove jogadores de Fla e Flu, Ferj divulga seleção do Campeonato Carioca". Globoesporte.com. May 7, 2017. Retrieved May 8, 2017.
|Abel Braga – managerial positions|