Moacir Barbosa

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Moacir Barbosa
Vasco45 barbosa.jpg
Barbosa in 1945
Personal information
Full name Moacir Barbosa Nascimento
Date of birth (1921-03-27)27 March 1921
Place of birth Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death 7 April 2000(2000-04-07) (aged 79)
Place of death Praia Grande, Brazil
Height 1.74 m (5 ft 9 in)[1]
Playing position(s) Goalkeeper
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1940–1941 ADCI-SP
1942–1944 Ypiranga-SP
1945–1955 Vasco da Gama
1956Bonsucesso (loan)
1957 Santa Cruz
1958–1960 Vasco da Gama
1962 Campo Grande
National team
1949–1953 Brazil 17 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Moacir Barbosa Nascimento (27 March 1921 – 7 April 2000) was a Brazilian professional football goalkeeper whose career spanned 22 years. He was regarded as one of the world's best goalkeepers in the 1940s and 1950s, and known for not wearing gloves, as would be typical. Nowadays he is mainly associated with Brazil's defeat against underdogs Uruguay in the decisive match of the 1950 FIFA World Cup, an upset dubbed the Maracanazo.

Club career[edit]

Success with Vasco da Gama[edit]

At club level, Barbosa had his greatest successes with Rio de Janeiro side CR Vasco da Gama. He won several trophies at Vasco, including the Campeonato Sul-Americano de Campeões in 1948, the original precursor to the Copa Libertadores.

International career[edit]

1949 Copa America[edit]

With the Brazilian national side, Barbosa won the 1949 Copa América. The 7–0 final victory over Paraguay remains to date the highest victory in a final of the competition.

The 1950 Maracanazo match and its aftermath[edit]

In the 1950 FIFA World Cup held on home soil, Brazil played Uruguay in the decisive match of the World Cup finals at the Maracanã stadium in Rio de Janeiro. Brazil was heavily favoured to win, and needed only a draw to win the round-robin tournament, but despite scoring first, Brazil lost 2–1 when Alcides Ghiggia scored the winning goal for Uruguay in the 79th minute after skilfully dribbling past Brazilian defender Bigode and then drilling the ball into the net while Barbosa was out of position, expecting a cross into the middle of the pitch. The loss stunned Brazilians and plunged the country into mourning, over what became known as the Maracanazo, or "the Maracana blow."

Barbosa was blamed for the defeat, for which he suffered for the rest of his life as the match became part of Brazilian folklore. In 2000, shortly before his death, he said in an interview: "The maximum punishment in Brazil is 30 years imprisonment, but I have been paying, for something I am not even responsible for, by now, for 50 years."[2] In 1993, the president of the Brazilian Football Confederation, Ricardo Teixeira, did not allow him to be commentator during the broadcast of one of Brazil's international matches.[3].

In 1963, Barbosa was presented with the old square wooden goalposts from the Maracanã as a present, which he took home and burned.[4]

On 7 April 2000, he died of a heart attack at the age of 79.[5]

In popular culture[edit]

Barbosa plays a large role in Ian McDonald's science fiction novel Brasyl. Barbosa is the main subject of the novel "The Last Save of Moacyr Barbosa" by Darwin Pastorin.

There is also a Brazilian short film named Barbosa,[6] premiered in 1988, in which a 49-year-old man (played by Antônio Fagundes) travels back in time trying to avoid Ghiggia's goal.[7]



Vasco da Gama



Unofficial Tournaments[edit]



¹) irregular friendly tournament between Brazil and Argentina
²) irregular friendly tournament between Brazil and Uruguay


  • Torneio Quadrangular do Rio (inoff.)¹: 1953
  • Torneio Internacional de Santiago de Chile (inoff.)²: 1953

¹) with CR Vasco da Gama, CR Flamengo (both R.d Janeiro), CA Boca Juniors and. Racing Club (both Argentina)
²) with CR Vasco da Gama, Millonarios (Bogotá) and CSD Colo-Colo (Santiago)



  1. ^ "Brazil - Moacir Barbosa Nascimento - Profile with news, career statistics and history". Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  2. ^ Top 10 World Cup Goalkeeping Blunders
  3. ^ Maracanã, the largest stadium of the world –
  4. ^ "Unforgiven". Soccer Tactics (via Google Knol). 21 November 2008. Archived from the original on 13 February 2010. Retrieved 16 September 2010.
  5. ^ Bellos, Alex (13 April 2000). "Moacir Barbosa". The Guardian. London.
  6. ^ – Barbosa (1988)
  7. ^ Casa do Cinema de Porto Alegre - Barbosa
  8. ^ IFFHS' Century Elections
  9. ^ IFFHS' Century Elections

External links[edit]