Cool Soccer Tricks: Rivaldo Hook
One of the most skillful footballers of his - or any - time, Rivaldo's ball wizardry for Barcelona and Brazil made him a role model for superstars who followed him for club and country like Messi and Neymar.
Forget Bend it Like Beckham, Rivaldo could drift a curling free kick away from the despairing clutches of some of the world's best goalkeepers almost at whim. He'd score overhead kicks, strikes from outside the box and from every angle. But he was probably best known for his close dribbling skills and control. Players with that level of ability feel like they can go on forever and Rivaldo attempted a comeback at the grand old age of 43 with Mogi Mirim Esporte Clube in his native Brazil only to discover that time doesn't really stand still, not even for a soccer master.
The Player Behind the Move
Born Rivaldo Vítor Borba Ferreira, he owed his unique talent to his hardscrabble upbringing in the favelas, or slums, of the port town of Recife in Brazil. His bowlegged gait and missing teeth tell one tale of the malnourishment he suffered in the lawless ghetto - but his prodigious talent tells quite another - of a youngster schooled in street soccer from the earliest age and desperate to escape his poverty-stricken surroundings.
Despite signing his first pro contract when he was 16, many of his early coaches doubted Rivaldo had the physical strength to succeed. They were proved wrong when the young star moved through the ranks of Brazilian clubs to eventually sign for FC Barcelona in 1997 in a transfer deal worth $26 million, then an immense amount. In his 5 years at the club he formed a formidable partnership with Patrick Kluivert and won the 1998 and 1999 La Liga championships and the 1998 Copa del Rey.
He scored 35 goals in 74 matches for Brazil between 1993 and 2003 and helped his team to a World Cup triumph in 2002 alongside fellow superstars Ronaldo and Ronaldinho. Rivaldo may have finally accepted the ineivtable and hung up his boots, but his silky moves live on, as you will see from this video.
About the Video
Paul Spacey is well known and highly respected within the Los Angeles area as a youth soccer coach, ex-player and also as a referee. His coaching approach focuses heavily on developing individual technical skills while simultaneously improving tactical awareness and understanding responsibilities within the team.
His experience as a player, referee and coach gives him a pretty unique perspective on the game which he passes onto players in the form of a fun but intense coaching style which definitely brings the best out of everyone he works with.
Background and Experience
- Youth Soccer Player – England (Stoke City FC)
- Semi Professional Soccer Player – England (Nuneaton Town, Brackley Town)
- Qualified and experienced FA (England) and USSF (United States) Referee
- Founder of PaulSpacey.com – Online professional soccer coaching program worldwide
- Author of 4 eBooks for coaches and referees – books translated into a number of different languages