Sylvinho at Arsenal
|Full name||Sylvio Mendes Campos Júnior|
|Date of birth||12 April 1974|
|Place of birth||São Paulo, Brazil|
|Playing position||Left back|
|2012||Sport Recife (assistant)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
Sylvio Mendes Campos Júnior (born 12 April 1974 in São Paulo, Brazil), commonly known as Sylvinho (sometimes alternatively spelled Silvinho) is a retired Brazilian footballer who usually played as an attacking left back.
Having begun his career at Corinthians, he was signed by Arsenal of the Premier League in 1999, and was a popular player in his two seasons at the club. He left for Celta Vigo of La Liga, before joining FC Barcelona in 2004, with whom he won the UEFA Champions League in 2006 and 2009 among other honours. He returned to England to spend his final season as a player with Manchester City in 2009–10. He has since been employed as an assistant manager at leading Brazilian clubs as well as at Italian club Internazionale.
Sylvinho started his career at Corinthians, remaining there from 1994 until 1999.
In 1999 he became the first ever Brazilian player to sign for English club Arsenal, whom he signed for ahead of North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur who had made numerous offers for him. Before long he was first choice at left back, displacing long-time fan-favourite Nigel Winterburn. He had a setback early on in his first season when he missed a penalty in a shootout as Arsenal crashed out of the League Cup to Middlesbrough, and that season finished in similar heartbreak as Arsenal lost 4–1 on penalties against Turkish club Galatasaray in the 2000 UEFA Cup Final, although this time he did not take a penalty. During his second season at the club he was displaced by Ashley Cole. His stay only lasted for two years but in his short spell there he gained many friends and admirers and scored several spectacular goals including ones against Sheffield Wednesday, Charlton Athletic and Chelsea. He also scored twice in the Champions League for Arsenal against Sparta Prague and Spartak Moscow. In his final season, he was included in the Premier League Team of the Season.
In 2001 he moved to Celta Vigo, and played there for three years, scoring once in the league against Barcelona, his future club. He became a popular figure with the club's fans, helping the team to qualify for the Champions League for the first time in their history during the 2002–03 season.
In 2004, after a transfer fee of €2 million, he was signed by FC Barcelona, where he won three domestic leagues, in 2005, 2006 and 2009, as well as the Champions League in 2006 and 2009. After a series of good performances in 2008, he was given an extension until 2009.
He played the entire match in Barcelona's 2–0 victory over defending champions Manchester United in the 2009 UEFA Champions League Final, ahead of the suspended Éric Abidal, previously having been an unused substitute in the final three years earlier. This was his final game for the Catalan club.
Manchester City visited the Camp Nou on 19 August 2009 and, having beaten Barcelona 1–0 in a friendly, held discussions about Sylvinho joining them at the end of the month, thereby joining up with countryman Robinho. It was announced on 24 August 2009 that he had signed for City on a free transfer, with a one-year contract. He made his debut against Scunthorpe United in the League Cup. His first league appearance came on 12 December 2009 against Bolton Wanderers, following the absence of an injured Wayne Bridge. He scored his first goal for Manchester City in a 4–2 win against Scunthorpe in the FA Cup on 24 January 2010, with a spectacular long range strike. On 8 June 2010, it was announced that Sylvinho's contract had expired and that he would be leaving the club, along with Benjani Mwaruwari, Jack Redshaw, Karl Moore and Martin Petrov.
After receiving his first international call-up in 1997 under Mario Zagallo for a match against Russia, Sylvinho made his international debut for Brazil in a friendly match against Wales at Cardiff on May 23, 2000, which ended in a 3–0 win. Four days later, he played in a friendly match against England in London, which ended in a 1–1 draw. He went on to achieve a total of 6 international caps, as a backup to Roberto Carlos at the left-back position. His last appearance with Brazil was on March 28, 2001 in a World Cup qualifier against Ecuador.
On 7 July 2011, Sylvinho announced he would be retiring from football. He was hired as Cruzeiro's assistant manager on 27 September 2011. On 13 December 2014, he was appointed as Roberto Mancini's assistant coach by Italian club Inter Milan.
Style of play
A quick, reliable, and technically gifted attacking left back, Sylvinho was known in particular for his overlapping runs, as well as his crossing ability with his left foot; he also possessed good tactical awareness, defensive attributes, and concentration, which also enabled him to play as a midfielder, as a wing-back, or even as a winger occasionally.
- As of 11 May 2010.
- UEFA Champions League: 2005–06, 2008–09
- La Liga: 2004–05, 2005–06, 2008–09
- Supercopa de España: 2005, 2006
- Copa del Rey: 2008–09
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- Grounds, Ben (23 April 2016). "Where does the class of 2016 rank among PFA Teams of the Year?". Daily Mail. Retrieved 7 January 2017.