Zito (footballer)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Zito 2008.jpg
Zito on the 50th anniversary of Brazil winning the 1958 FIFA World Cup Final
Personal information
Full name José Ely de Miranda
Date of birth 8 August 1932
Place of birth Roseira, São Paulo, Brazil
Date of death 14 June 2015 (aged 82)
Place of death Santos, Brazil
Height 1.79 m (5 ft 10 12 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Youth career
1948–1950 Roseira
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1950–1952 Taubaté
1952–1967 Santos 727 (57)
National team
1955–1964 Brazil 52 (3)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

† Appearances (goals)

José Ely de Miranda (8 August 1932 – 14 June 2015), commonly known as Zito, was a Brazilian footballer who played as a defensive midfielder.

His club career was spent mostly in the service of Santos, captaining a side including Pelé to domestic and international successes. He was also part of the Brazilian squads which won the World Cup in 1958 and 1962.

After his retirement as a player, Zito remained at Santos as a director and youth coordinator, developing several young future international players.

Playing career[edit]

Born in Roseira, São Paulo, Zito joined Santos in 1952, after finishing his formation at hometown club Roseira FC, and spending two years at Taubaté.[1] He made his debut for Peixe on 29 June 1952 in a 3–1 friendly win against Madureira.[2]

Zito appeared regularly for Santos in the following 15 years, playing 733 games and scoring 57 goals. He was the captain of the Os Santásticos team of the late 1950s and 1960s, playing alongside Pelé, Pepe and other Brazilian stars.[3]

Zito (standing, third from left) lining up for the 1958 FIFA World Cup Final

Zito was nicknamed Gerente (manager in Portuguese) by the media during his playing days, due to helping the manager Lula while outfields.[4] Despite missing the two last games of 1963 Intercontinental Cup due to an injury, he acted as Lula's assistant during both matches as his team won the second title in a row.[4]

Zito played his last match on 7 November 1967, a 5–0 win against a mix between Ferroviário and Fortaleza at the Estádio Presidente Vargas.[2]

At international level, he earned 52 caps for Brazil. He partnered Didi in midfield, and was part of the squad which won the 1958 FIFA World Cup Final against hosts Sweden; after starting the tournament as a reserve, he finished it as an undisputed starter.[5] In the 1962 edition in Chile, he was named in the Team of the Tournament.[3] In the final of that tournament, Zito headed Brazil into the lead as they came from behind to win 3–1 against Czechoslovakia with Pelé absent through injury.[6]

Life after football[edit]

After retiring Zito was a vice-president at Santos between 1978 and 1982. After one year away from the club, he was named director of football by president Milton Teixeira, but left the post in 1987. In 2000 he was named a youth coordinate, helping the club to promote youngsters Robinho and Diego to the first team.[7]

Zito was credited with bringing 11-year-old Neymar to the club in 2003.[3] With Gabriel, he was also the scout who saw the player and brought him to the club's youth system.[7]


Zito suffered from Alzheimer's disease and had memory lapses.[8] Following a stroke the year before, Zito died on 14 June 2015 aged 82, leaving Pelé and Zagallo as the last two living Brazilian veterans of the 1958 World Cup final.[3]







External links[edit]