Do Brazilian Football Stars Still Hold the Same Allure Internationally?

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Do Brazilian Football Stars Still Hold the Same Allure Internationally?
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A Brazilian football star is one of the most valuable commodities in modern football. The arrival of such a player causes supporters to wax lyrical about their new signing, especially if his name ends in "-inho." 

For the last two decades, Brazilian imports have excited and delighted fans and neutrals alike with outrageous skills and abilities.

The Selecao have delivered some of the world's biggest talents, demonstrating their talents on the European stage, particularly in the Champions League.

However, critics of late would suggest that with the rapid globalisation of football, Brazilians have somehow lost their sheen. That they no longer excite loyal supporters if their club should be linked with one.

In accordance with this trend, the latest fashion in footballers seem to be diminutive Spanish attackers, with La Roja conquering all on the international stage.

And Brazil looks to have been left by the wayside.

But is that necessarily the case? A list of all major transfers involving Brazilians since 1990 has been compiled and split into decades for your perusal and judgment, in an effort to see just how popular Brazilian stars have been in football.

So let's start with the 1990s.

Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Year Player From To Fee Source
1990 Aldair Benfica Roma €9m Transfermarkt
1991 Mazinho Bragantino Bayern Munich €1.8m Transfermarkt
1992 Bebeto Vasco da Gama Deportivo La Coruna €0.7m Transfermarkt
1993 Romario PSV  Barcelona €12m Transfermarkt
1994 Ronaldo Cruzeiro PSV €5.5m Transfermarkt
1995 Roberto Carlos Palmeiras Inter €3.5m Transfermarkt
1995 Juninho Paulista Sao Paulo Middlesbrough €5.5m Transfermarkt
1996 Ronaldo PSV  Barcelona €15m Transfermarkt
1996 Roberto Carlos Inter Real Madrid €6m Transfermarkt
1996 Rivaldo Palmeiras Deportivo La Coruna €12m Transfermarkt
1996 Ze Roberto Portuguesa Real Madrid €9m Transfermarkt
1996 Conceicao Palmeiras Deportivo La Coruna €11m Transfermarkt
1997 Rivaldo Deportivo La Coruna Barcelona €23.5m Transfermarkt
1997 Ronaldo Barcelona Inter €28m Transfermarkt
1997 Sonny Anderson Monaco Barcelona €18m Transfermarkt
1998 Denilson Sao Paulo Real Betis €31.5m Transfermarkt
1999 Amoroso Udinese Parma €28m Transfermarkt
1999 Sonny Anderson Barcelona Lyon €19m Transfermarkt

The Brazilian influx in Europe got under way with €239 million worth of talent arriving or moving across the continent, with several World Cup stars in their midst.

Ronaldo alone fetched €48.5 million in transfer fees as he made the switch from Cruzeiro to PSV, who then sold him to Barcelona for a handsome profit, with a move to Inter coming a year later.

"O Fenomeno" was followed by the likes of Rivaldo, Roberto Carlos and lesser luminaries such as Sonny Anderson and Amoroso to prove that Brazilians were up there with some of the most valuable players on the continent.

To put it all in perspective, Ronaldo and Denilson's moves to Inter and Real Betis, respectively, broke the world record in quick succession.

The 1990s were a good time to be a Brazilian, that's for certain. But did the turn of the millennium bring any changes?

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Year Player From To Fee Source
2000 Conceicao Deportivo La Coruna Real Madrid €25m Transfermarkt
2000 Lucas Atletico-PR  Rennes €21.3m Transfermarkt
2000 Jardel FC Porto Galatasaray €16m Transfermarkt
2000 Emerson Roma Bayer Leverkusen €20m Transfermarkt
2001 Amoroso Parma Borussia Dortmund €25m Sky Sports
2001 Geovanni Cruzeiro Barcelona €21m Transfermarkt
2002 Ronaldo Inter Real Madrid €35m SI
2003 Ronaldinho PSG Barcelona €30m ABC
2004 Emerson Roma Juventus €28m CNN
2005 Julio Baptista Sevilla Real Madrid €20m Sambafoot
2005 Robinho Santos Real Madrid €22.5m ESPN
2005 Fred Cruzeiro Lyon €15m Sambafoot
2007 Anderson FC Porto Manchester United €30m FC Porto
2007 Alexandre Pato Internacional AC Milan €24m CBC
2008 Ronaldinho Barcelona AC Milan €21m Guardian
2008 Robinho Real Madrid Manchester City €40m Telegraph
2008 Dani Alves Sevilla Barcelona €33m Telegraph
2008 Jo CSKA Moscow Manchester City €21m Guardian
2008 Hulk Tokyo Verdy FC Porto €19m Transfermarkt
2009 Kaka AC Milan Real Madrid €65m BBC
2009 Felipe Melo Fiorentina Juventus €20m Goal.com
2009 Michel Bastos Lille Lyon €18m Sky Sports
2009 Diego Werder Bremen Juventus €24.5m Goal.com
2009 Nilmar Internacional Villarreal €10m Reuters

The 2000s got off to a relatively slow start where Brazilians were concerned, with only nine players moving in the first half of the decade for big fees.

But in the second half, the transfer market exploded.

Fifteen players changed clubs for huge amounts of money, putting the total up to €604.3 million for the decade, helped in no small way by Kaka's ludicrous €65 million fee, which still remains the highest fee paid for a Brazilian footballer.

Not bad at all as we headed into the 2010s.

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Club Player From To Fee Source
2010 Ramires Cruzeiro Chelsea €22m Guardian
2010 Robinho Manchester City AC Milan €21m Telegraph
2010 Carlos Eduardo Hoffenheim Rubin Kazan €20m Goal.com
2010 Luiz Gustavo Hoffenheim Bayern Munich €15m CNN
2010 Diego Juventus Wolfsburg €15.5m DW
2011 David Luiz Benfica Chelsea €25m ESPN
2012 Oscar Internacional Chelsea €29m BBC
2012 Hulk FC Porto Zenit St Petersburg €40m UEFA
2012 Lucas Moura Sao Paulo PSG €45m Independent
2012 Thiago Silva AC Milan  PSG €42m Goal.com
2012 Taison Metalist Shakhtar €20m Guardian
2013 Neymar Santos Barcelona €57m Goal.com
2013 Fernandinho Shakhtar Manchester City €40m Goal.com
2013 Marquinhos Roma PSG €35m Goal.com
2013 Paulinho Corinthians Tottenham €20m Guardian
2013 Fernando Gremio Shakhtar €11m Goal.com
2013 Fred Internacional Shakhtar €15m Goal.com
2013 Alexandre Pato AC Milan Corinthians €15m Guardian
2013 Willian Shakhtar Anzhi €35m Guardian

There's clearly been an incredible boom in transfers involving Brazilians since 2010, with a staggering €522.5 million changing hands in just three years. That is set to increase even further with the 2013 summer transfer window yet to close.

Several more transfers could see it smash the €600 million barrier.

That tipping point could be reached this summer, with the likes of Hernanes, Luiz Gustavo, Bernard and Leandro Damiao all potential movers in the coming weeks.

Only three years into the 2010s, we are already set to break the total fees set in the 2000s, with the prospect of even more to come.

In addition to this, nine Brazilians are currently listed on the all-time transfer fees paid list compiled by Transfermarkt, with only Argentina coming close with seven.

So do Brazilian footballers still hold the same allure on the international stage?

Oh yes.

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