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Personal information
Full name Emerson Moisés Costa
Date of birth April 12, 1972 (1972-04-12) (age 37)
Place of birth    Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Height 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Senior career1
Years Club App (Gls)*
FC Porto
Deportivo La Coruña
Atlético Madrid
Vasco da Gama
Skoda Xanthi
AEK Athens
000 0(0)
000 0(0)
055 0(1)
060 0(9)
053 0(9)
086 0(4)
043 0(0)
029 0(2)
014 0(0)
014 0(1)
016 0(1)
030 0(1)
013 0(0)
000 0(0)
413 (27)   

1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only.
* Appearances (Goals)

Emerson Moisés Costa (born April 12, 1972 in Rio de Janeiro), simply known as Emerson, is a former Brazilian footballer, who played as a defensive midfielder.

He played (other than in his homeland) in six different countries professionally, and also received Portuguese citizenship after he married his Portuguese wife.


Football career

Emerson's career began with Brazilian side Clube de Regatas do Flamengo, but he soon moved to Coritiba Foot Ball Club in search of first team football. In 1991, he began his extensive overseas spell, first with C.F. Os Belenenses in Portugal.

After several impressive displays, Emerson secured a move to giants F.C. Porto. Under the management of former England boss Bobby Robson, he won successive league titles, appeared in the UEFA Champions League, and won the 1996 Portuguese player of the year award.

By now Emerson's reputation had grown in stature and his performances had attracted interest from major European clubs. Eventually he chose to move to English Premiership club Middlesbrough FC, completing a £4 million move. It is alleged that the deal was done without manager Bryan Robson's knowledge, Robson only finding out after it was unwittingly mentioned by the club's chief scout Ray Train. Emerson's cousin Fabio also joined Middlesbrough, although he played just one game in 14 months on Teesside.

However, things turned sour quickly with Emerson's former manager Bobby Robson, now at FC Barcelona, expressing his interest in bringing the player to the Camp Nou. This unsettled the midfielder, who by this time had already endured relegation to Division One, in addition to difficulties in adjusting to life on Teesside. He travelled to Brazil for a break at the end of 1997, and once there threatened that he would not return to the club.

Eventually the dispute was resolved with a move to CD Tenerife in January 1998, for around £4.25 million. Surprisingly, Middlesbrough chief executive Keith Lamb later stated that he had tried to re-sign the player after Tenerife were relegated. He remained with the Canary Islands club until 2000 when he moved to Deportivo de La Coruña, after the Galicians 2000 league title. At Depor, he often partnered compatriot Mauro Silva in his first year, but played sparingly in the following.

After further stays with Atlético Madrid and Rangers F.C., where he became the first ever Brazilian to play for the Scottish side and scored once against Panathinakos in the Champions League,[1] Emerson moved to Greece, joining Skoda Xanthi F.C. in the summer of 2005. After having stayed there only six months, he transferred to AEK Athens FC, in January 2006.

On May 23, 2007 Emerson was released by AEK to join 2007 Cyprus champions, APOEL FC, from Nicosia. But, in January of the following year, he returned to Brazil and ended his career playing for Madureira Esporte Clube, at the Carioca League.



  • Allen, Bevington, Harper (1997). Boro's Best. Juniper Publishing. ISBN 0-9528622-1-2.  

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