Santiago 2023’s Stars: Ricardo Alves, a Goal Scorer of Distinction

Ricardinho became one of the top scorers in blind football and helped his team secure the gold medal in the final against Colombia.

Sunday, November 26th, 2023.- The Brazilian blind football team was crowned champion in the discipline, and Ricardo Steinmetz Alves, known as Ricardinho, emerged as one of the top scorers at the Santiago 2023 Parapan American Games with five goals. 

Like many kids, Ricardinho always dreamed of being a football player. At the age of eight, it seemed like everything was lost when he lost his sight due to a detached retina. However, he discovered adapted football, and from the age of 10, he dedicated himself wholeheartedly to the sport. 

Ricardinho arrived at Santiago 2023 as a prominent figure, both for his team's performance and his status as a global football star. He has been named the best player in the world three times: in 2006, 2014, and 2018. 

The player has ample experience, having participated in three Paralympic Games and winning three gold medals with the Brazilian team. At Rio 2016, as the captain, Ricardinho scored the goal that secured the gold medal in the 1-0 victory in the final against Iran. Two years later, he was named Paralympic Athlete of the Year in Brazil after leading his team to its fifth World Championship title. 

At Santiago 2023, he scored one goal against Chile, three against Peru, and one in the final against Colombia. 

Written by Ernesto Bustos B; translated by Rocio Rojas / Santiago 2023 via Photosport 
Photo by Andrés Piña / Santiago 2023 via Photosport

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