In recent years, many Brazilian players have graced the Stamford Bridge pitch, much to the admiration of the Chelsea fans. Willian, David Luiz, and Oscar are just a few Brazilians that have donned the Chelsea jersey in recent years. One player that might’ve slipped by is defensive midfielder Mineiro.
Spending most of his career in Brazil, before a solitary season in the Bundesliga with Hertha Berlin, Mineiro was a free agent looking for a new club. In September 2008, Chelsea surprisingly announced the signing of the then-33-year old midfielder.
Under boss Luiz Felipe Scolari, Mineiro was signed as a back-up option to John Obi Mikel and Michael Essien, with the Ghanaian being ruled out for six months with a knee injury. Claude Makelele’s departure, who had left for PSG in July of the same year, left Chelsea searching for a new defensive midfielder. Mineiro wasn’t this player.
The Brazilian made his not-so-eagerly anticipated debut in a Premier League fixture in November 2008. With Chelsea already 5-0 up against Sunderland, Nicolas Anelka was withdrawn after scoring a hat-trick and replaced with Mineiro. With only 15 minutes of Premier League action to his name, this would be his only appearance in the league for Chelsea.
Mineiro made his first, and only, start for Chelsea in a League Cup game at home to Championship side Burnley. Despite the likes of Didier Drogba, Frank Lampard, and Deco all playing, Chelsea were beaten on penalties by Burnley.
Unfortunately for Mineiro, this would be the last time Chelsea fans would see him play for the club. The sacking of Scolari in February 2009 ultimately ended Mineiro’s underwhelming stint at Chelsea. He was released following the expiration of his contract in the Summer of 2009.
Despite a lacklustre season at Chelsea, Mineiro returned to Germany and signed a one-year deal at Schalke. The Brazilian failed to make an impact in Gelsenkirchen and was released at the end of the season.
Mineiro’s final club in a truly illustrious career was also in Germany, but the Brazilian had dropped to the fourth tier. In his final season as a professional, Mineiro played his football for TuS Koblenz. After a season at the Stadion Oberwerth, Mineiro retired from football.
A truly forgettable player, Mineiro probably isn’t remembered by most Chelsea fans.
There we have it, just the first of a number of Forgettable Blues. What other obscure ex-Chelsea players would you like to read about next? Comment below.