Esporte Clube Bahia

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Esporte Clube Bahia logo.png
Full name Esporte Clube Bahia
Nickname(s) Tricolor
Bahiaço (mix of Bahia and aço, steel)
Tricolor de aço (tricolor of steel)
Esquadrão de aço (Steel squadron)
Founded January 1, 1931; 87 years ago (1931-01-01)
Stadium Arena Fonte Nova (Salvador, Bahia)
Ground Capacity 48,747
President Guilherme Bellintani[1]
Head coach Cláudio Prates (interim)
League Campeonato Brasileiro Série A
Campeonato Baiano
Série A, 12th
Baiano, 2nd
Website Club website

The Esporte Clube Bahia (Portuguese pronunciation: [isˈpɔʁtʃi ˈklubi baˈi.ɐ]), known familiarly as Bahia, is a Brazilian professional football club, based in Salvador, Bahia. They play in the Campeonato Baiano, Bahia's state league, and the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A, Brazil's first tier league.

The Bahia has won the Brasileirão title twice: in the 1959 season, defeating the Santos' Santásticos which contained figures such as Gilmar, Mauro, Mengálvio, Coutinho, Pepe and Pelé, in the finals and in the 1988 season the Bahia edged Internacional. The Bahia has only appeared in the Copa Libertadores three times, reaching the quarterfinals in 1989, the Bahia's best-ever performance. The club has also won their state title a record 46 times.

The 2000s have seen the club win only four state titles. The Bahia were relegated to the Série B in 2003 and relegated, for the first time ever, to the Série C in 2005, spending two seasons at the bottom of the Brazilian league system. In 2007, they were promoted back to the second level, and in 2010 the club found themselves back in the Série A, after eight seasons. The Bahia had played their home games at the 66,080 capacity Estádio Fonte Nova since 1951 but after a section of the stadium collapsed in 2007, the Tricolor played at the Estádio de Pituaçu. With the reopening of the Fonte Nova stadium in 2013 as the Arena Fonte Nova, a modern arena built for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, the Bahia resumed playing their games there. The club's home uniform consists of white shirts with blue shorts and red socks. They have a long-standing rivalry with the Vitória and matches between the two sides are known as the Ba–Vi.


Early years and the first national title[edit]

Bahia´s team, 1959. National Archives of Brazil.

The Esporte Clube Bahia was founded in 1931, when players from two clubs decided to merge. The Associação Atlética da Bahia and the Clube Bahiano de Tênis had decided to discontinue their football divisions. A few years later the Bahia became the most popular team in the Northeast of Brazil.[citation needed]

In the club's first year, the Bahia won the Torneio Inicio and the Bahia State Championship. The first Bahia president was Waldemar Costa, a doctor. The Bahia's crest is based on Corinthians'[citation needed]. The Bahia state flag, created by Raimundo Magalhães, was used in place of the São Paulo state flag.

The team was founded with the motto "Nasceu para Vencer" (Born to Win). The Bahia won 43 State Championships, 17 more than the Vitória (their rival club), and was the first club to participate in the Taça Libertadores da America in 1960.

Between 1959 and 1963, and in 1968, the cub represented the state of Bahia at the Taça Brasil (the precursor of the Brazilian Championship), winning the title in 1959 and finishing as runner-up in 1961 and 1963.

The 1980s and the second national title[edit]

The 1980s were the best in the Bahia's history. The Bahia won their second national title in 1988, finishing 5th in 1986 and 4th in 1990.

In 1989, the Bahia won its second Brazilian Championship against the Internacional from Porto Alegre. The Bahia won the first leg in Salvador by 2–1. The second leg ended in an 0–0 tie in Porto Alegre at the Beira Rio Stadium. After these results the Bahia won the Brasileirão, their second national title. The championship gave the Bahia the right to play the Copa Libertadores for a third time. It was a shock for the southern press[citation needed] because Salvador is in the Northeast, the poorest region of Brazil, and the victory was over the Internacional, a team from southern Brazil, the region that has the highest Human Development Index in the country.

Dark years[edit]

In 1997, the Bahia was relegated to the Série B for the first time in its history after a 0–0 draw against the Juventude at the Fonte Nova stadium. In 1999 Bahia was close to being promoted to the Série A again. The Bahia had a very good season, but finished in 3rd place, which was not enough to see them promoted.

In 2000, due to bribery scandals involving clubs such as the São Paulo and the Internacional, the team returned to the Brazilian First Division, invited by the Clube dos 13, along with the Fluminense, which was made a scapegoat for the controversy and was nationally victimized by the media (see Copa João Havelange).

In 2002 the bank that had sponsored the team went bankrupt and the Bahia began a descent down the Brazilian football pyramid. After the title of the Northeast Cup in 2001 and 2002, the Bahia performed poorly in 2003, and were relegated to the Série B for the second time in the club's history. In 2004, the team was close to getting promoted to the Série A again, finishing 4th. In order to be promoted, the Bahia would have to win the final match against the Brasiliense, but the referee Paulo César de Oliveira was assigned to that match and many people[who?] say he was all but fair on that day. In 2005, the club again competed in the Série B, finishing in 18th place, and was relegated to the Série C for the first time in the club's history.

Fênix tricolor (tricolored phoenix)[edit]

The Bahia finished 2007 among the first four teams of the Third Division, and were promoted to the Second Division for the 2008 season. The Bahia began strongly, but in the last game of the 3rd stage of the Série C against the already-eliminated Fast Club, the Bahia needed a win to advance to the final. The victory came in the last minute of the game with a goal scored by Charles. In the final, the team finished the third division in 2nd place, only losing the title in the final round.[citation needed] This moment is called the "Fênix Tricolor" amongst the Bahia fans.[citation needed] The phoenix represents the Bahia rising from the ashes.

Despite playing in the Third Division of Brazilian football in 2007, the Bahia had the largest average attendance in Brazil: 40,400 people per match.[citation needed] No club in the Third, the Second, or even the First Division was able to match it.[citation needed] However, this is not unusual for the Bahia, having also achieved the biggest average attendance in Brazil in 2004 (Second Division), 1988 (First Division), 1986 (First Division), and 1985 (First Division).[citation needed]

Recent years[edit]

From 2010 to 2014 the Bahia remained in the first division. In 2014 they were relegated to the second division again, but came back in 2016. In 2017 they are playing in the first division. After 22 years out of international competition, the Bahia returned in 2012 when they qualified for the Copa Sul-americana. In addition, they have won the 2012, 2014 and 2015 Bahia State Championship and the Northeast Cup in 2017.

In February 2018 the intense rivalry between the Bahia and the Esporte Clube Vitória drew international attention when ten players (five from each team) were shown the red card in a State Championship match.[2]


Bahia's colors are blue, red, and white. The blue color pays homage to the Associação Atlética da Bahia; white, to the Clube Baiano de Tênis; and red for the Bahia state flag. The club's mascot is called Super-Homem Tricolor (Tricolor Superman) and was inspired by the DC Comics character. The mascot was created by the famous cartoonist Ziraldo based on the expression "Esquadrão de Aço" (Steel Squad), and wears a costume very similar to the original Superman's costume, which shares the team's colors.


The Bahia played at the Fonte Nova stadium from its inauguration in 1951 until November 2007. During the game against the Vila Nova (during Bahia's promotion campaign) a part of the stadium collapsed. Seven people died and more than 30 were injured.

After that episode, the state government declared that the stadium would be demolished. A new stadium was built on the site for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Some notable games at the Fonte Nova:

In April, the Bahia were back to the Arena Fonte Nova


Only senior titles are listed below.


Winners (2): 1959, 1988
Runners-up (2): 1961, 1963
Runner-up (1): 2007


Winners (3): 2001, 2002, 2017
Runners-up (3): 1997, 1999, 2015
Winners (3): 1959, 1961, 1963
Runners-up (3): 1960, 1962, 1968
Winners (1): 1948


Winners (47): 1931, 1933, 1934, 1936, 1938,[3] 1940, 1944, 1945, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1952, 1954, 1956, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1967, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1998, 1999,[4] 2001, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2018
Runners-up (19): 1941, 1955, 1957, 1963, 1964, 1969, 1972, 1985, 1989, 1992, 1997, 2000, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013
Winners (3): 2000, 2002, 2007
Runners-up (2): 2004, 2006
Winners (9): 1931, 1932, 1934, 1937, 1938, 1951, 1964, 1967, 1979
  • U-20
Winners (16): 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2010, 2014

Friendly tournaments[edit]

Winners (1): 1997
Winners (1): 1998
Winners (3): 1953, 1954, 1955
Winners (2): 1993, 1994


Winners (2): 2001, 2002
Winners (1): 2011

Current squad[edit]

First team[edit]

As of 1 June 2018

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
1 Brazil GK Douglas Friedrich
2 Brazil DF Nino Paraíba
3 Brazil DF Tiago
4 Brazil DF Jackson
5 Brazil MF Flávio
6 Chile DF Eugenio Mena
7 Brazil FW Élber
8 Argentina MF Agustín Allione (on loan from Palmeiras)
10 Brazil MF Zé Rafael
11 Brazil FW Edigar Junio
13 Brazil DF Douglas Grolli
14 Brazil DF Léo (on loan from Fluminense)
15 Brazil MF Edson (on loan from Fluminense)
16 Brazil DF Rodrigo Becão
No. Position Player
17 Brazil MF Elton
19 Brazil MF Nílton
20 Brazil MF Régis
21 Brazil FW Kayke (on loan from Yokohama F. Marinos)
23 Brazil FW Júnior Brumado
25 Brazil DF Everson
26 Brazil MF Gregore (on loan from São Carlos)
27 Brazil FW Ítalo
28 Brazil DF Lucas Fonseca
29 Brazil MF Vinícius
30 Brazil MF Marco Antonio
32 Brazil GK Fernando Castro
33 Brazil GK Anderson

Out on loan[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
Brazil MF Juninho (to Ceará until 31 December 2018)
Brazil MF Feijão (to CRB until 31 December 2018)
Brazil MF Yuri (to CSA until 31 December 2018)
No. Position Player
Brazil FW Kaynan (to Caldense until 31 December 2018)
Brazil FW Zé Roberto (to São Bento until 31 December 2018)



  1. ^ "Guilherme Bellintani". Esporte Clube Bahia. Retrieved 23 December 2017. 
  2. ^ "Vitoria v Bahia abandoned after 10 red cards and eight yellows". 18 February 2018 – via 
  3. ^ Two championships were organized in 1938.the other one was won by Botafogo.
  4. ^ The 1999 title was shared with Vitória.

External links[edit]