Roberto Acuña

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Roberto Acuña
ROBERTO ACUÑA (17028268530, cropped).jpg
Personal information
Full name Roberto Miguel Acuña Cabello
Date of birth (1972-03-25) 25 March 1972 (age 44)
Place of birth Avellaneda, Argentina
Height 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Deportivo Recoleta
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1989–1993 Nacional
1993–1994 Argentinos Juniors 33 (4)
1994–1995 Boca Juniors 31 (3)
1995–1997 Indepediente 65 (3)
1997–2002 Zaragoza 153 (20)
2002–2006 Deportivo La Coruña 14 (0)
2003–2004 Elche (loan) 26 (2)
2004 Al Ain (loan) 4 (0)
2007 Rosario Central 4 (0)
2007 Olimpia 16 (3)
2009–2012 Rubio Ñu 97 (15)
2013–2014 12 de Octubre 8 (1)
2015 Deportivo Recoleta
2016 Rubio Ñu 13 (0)
2016– Deportivo Recoleta 0 (0)
National team
1993–2011 Paraguay 100 (5)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 10 July 2016.


This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name is Acuña and the second or maternal family name is Cabello.

Roberto Miguel Acuña Cabello (Spanish pronunciation: [roˈβerto miˈɣel aˈkuɲa kaˈβeʎo]; born 25 March 1972) is a Paraguayan footballer who plays for Deportivo Recoleta.

Nicknamed El Toro (bull) due to his strength and dominating presence, he operated as a central midfielder. He spent several years as a professional in Spain at Zaragoza and Deportivo, being very unlucky at the latter.

Acuña played 100 times for Paraguay, representing the nation in three World Cups and four Copa América tournaments.

Club career[edit]

Acuña was born in Avellaneda, Buenos Aires, Argentina, emigrating to Paraguay at a young age and starting playing for Club Nacional in 1989. After five years, he decided to acquire the country's citizenship to play for the national team, eventually becoming the second most capped player in Paraguay's history, second only to Carlos Gamarra.

Afterwards, Acuña played four seasons back in Argentina, with Argentinos Juniors, Club Atlético Independiente and Boca Juniors, before moving to Europe in 1997 where he signed with Spain's Real Zaragoza. With the Aragonese he was an everpresent midfield fixture, helping the side to the 2001 conquest of the Copa del Rey.[1][2] In 2001, he won the Paraguayan Footballer of the Year award.[3]

Consequently, Acuña attracted attention from Deportivo de La Coruña, which bought the player for five years and 11 million even though he was still due a five-match suspension from the previous season, where Zaragoza was relegated.[4] With the Galicians, however, he never appeared more than seven times in the league during his spell, also struggling with injuries[5] and being often loaned.[6]

Acuña first retired in 2007, finishing his career in Paraguay with Olimpia Asunción. However, in 2009, he came out of inactivity, signing with lowly Club Rubio Ñu; in 2012, the 40-year-old joined Club 12 de Octubre.

In 2015, aged 43, Acuña helped Deportivo Recoleta gain promotion to the Paraguayan Primera División B.[7][8] In December of that year, he re-joined former club Rubio Ñu,[9] going on to represent both subsequently.[10]

International career[edit]

Like central defender Gamarra, Acuña appeared in three FIFA World Cups1998, 2002 and 2006 – and collected 100 caps in total, scoring five goals.[11][12] He played in all the matches for the national in all three editions, and was the first Paraguayan to be sent off in a World Cup when he elbowed Germany's Michael Ballack in the last minute of the 0–1 round-of-16 loss on 15 June 2002 (for a second bookable offense).[13]

Acuña retired from international competition on 11 June 2011 at the age of 39, captaining Paraguay in a friendly with Romania.

Honours[edit]

Club[edit]

Independiente
Zaragoza
Deportivo

Individual[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]