Marcelo Vieira da Silva Júnior, or “Marcelo” is a 22 year old Brazilian National who has had a fantastic year for Real this year. He likes to push up the left side as either a back or winger and has been vital to Madrid’s success. I’ll be honest in saying that I had some doubts about the young player’s role at the beginning of the year. Moreover, I’d become even more nervous after discovering that Jose Mourinho would be leading the Spanish giants this year since Mourinho is known for his more tactical approach that can occasionally yield less goals. Knowing that Marcelo is more offensive minded, I’ve been pleasantly surprised that the two (Mou and Mar) seemed to have formed quite the relationship.
“Marcelo” has two goals in 27 appearances and has made quite the statement with his truly aggressive style of play. His wild hair and emotional play is a nice complement to Sergio Ramos on the other side who plays a similar style. He’s fired 23 shots this season on goal and most have been lasers that the opposing keeper has had to save. The Rio de Janiero born left defender who came over from Fluminense in 2007 also occasionally features for the Brazilian national team in their international matches.
Marcelo is easy to spot on the pitch. His 5’7, 161 lb frame is deceiving given his strength off the ball and has defied critics this year displaying his solid marking abilities. How did Marcelo achieve success in one of the best professional leagues in the world? Many attribute his rapid rise to one wily veteran who was extremely important in teaching the young Brazilian how to adapt to the game in a new city and country (and with class). Some of you may have heard of him. Roberto Carlos (one of the most famous Brazilian left backs of all time) took the young 18yr old defender under his wing when he first came to Real Madrid and taught him the necessary skills to be able to compete for the best European club of all time.
So, who else does Marcelo look up to? Rooney? Villa? Carvalho? Cannavaro? Marcelo has sung high praises for the Canary Island born and Spanish Selection star, Pedro(of Barca), who is one of the top players in La Liga. Marcelo likes Pedro’s ability to quickly create shots on goal as well as his speedy explosiveness up the wing. The truth of the matter is that Marcelo’s tenacity is quickly rivaling that of Pedro.
Marcelo’s overall agility and drive to win has helped in the Champions League, especially against Lyon in the previous round, and Real will certainly rely on his attack against Tottenham in the upcoming CL quarterfinals matches. His defensive abilities (who some still question) will be closely evaluated since there are still two very important matches against Barca (Clasico part 2 and the King’s Cup). For now, he’ll just continue to be a rising “Samba Boy”.
About the Author
Written by Timothy Ashe Jr.
Tim was born and raised in Downers Grove, IL (a suburb of Chicago). He graduated with a degree in Political Science and Spanish from the University of Illinois @ Urbana-Champaign and also holds University English Language Excellence certificates. He's fluent in Spanish and teaches both English and Spanish in his spare time. He's a Real Madrid and Chicago Fire aficionado and is partial towards the EPL and LFP. His hope is that the game of soccer can continue to grow in the U.S.A. and for our men's national team to eventually win the World Cup.