Carlos da Silva
Roberto Carlos began his career as a forward at Uniao Sao Joao at 16 and represented Brazil for the first time at 18 in the 1992 Olympic qualifying tournament. Endowed with a very powerful shot, he moved to Palmeiras. As a full-back he has won more plaudits for his attacking play than his defending yet he was unhappy for four months at Inter Milan where the club's English coach Roy Hodgson moved him up into midfield. Roberto Carlos, overlooked for the 1994 World Cup finals where Branco and Leonardo were preferred, likes his position. "I like to go up along the touchline but I also like defending. I'm learning to defend more," he says. Paris St Germain could have had him for about $3 million in 1995. Instead he went to Inter for some $7 million. After one season he moved on to Real, joining another of the Spanish club's Italian signings, coach Fabio Capello. Quick in turning defence into attack down the left, the Brazilian international is a fine corner taker and has a devastating shot at set pieces. A free kick specialist remembered for his spectacular goal against France in a summer international, Roberto Carlos says he works at his free-kicks every day and the only secret is concentration. "I always practise, every day. I prefer to kick with the outside of my foot. There's no secret, it's much more (a question of) concentration."