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Tostao

Brazil

Full name: Eduardo Gonçalves de Andrade
Date of birth: 25/01/1947
Position: Forward
International caps: 65
International goals: 36
World Cups: 1966 - First Round
1970 - Champions
South American Footballer of the Year: 1971
Clubs: America MG
Cruzeiro
Vasco da Gama
1962-1963
1963-1972
1972-1973

Tostao ("Little Coin") was an intelligent footballer, known for his acture positional sense, fluid style, and fond of playing as a deep centre forward. He was, of course, a crucial part of the legendary attacking foursome, alongside Pele, Jairzinho and Rivelino, in the Brazilian national team of the 1970 World Cup.

Tostao made his debut in World Cup football against Hungary in the 1966 group stages, as a replacement for the injured Pele. Only 19 years old, and in a weakened team that eventually lost 3-1, he managed to shine, scoring Brazil's goal.

Tostao celebrates a goal

Tostao's importance to Brazil was highlighted by his amazing record of 10 goals in six matches in qualifying for the 1970 World Cup, including two hat-tricks, both against Venezuela. In the tournament proper, Brazil continued their dominance. Tostao's personal moment of glory came in the quarter final clash against Peru, where he scored twice with two clinical strikes of precision and power in a 4-2 victory. Although not on the scoresheet, he was in his element in the final two games against Uruguay and Italy, and was an integral part of the relentless attacking football.

In club football, Tostao scored 249 goals in 378 appearences for Cruzeiro, and remains their leading goalscorer of all time. He won many state league and cup competitions with Cruzeiro, but their greatest triumph, was the 6-2 (home) and 3-2 (away) victories in the final of the fledgeling national Taca Brasil (Brazilian Trophy) against Pele's usually dominant Santos. He also won the inaugral South American Footballer of the Year award in 1971.

Tostao in action

In 1969 Tostao suffered a detached retina, which almost forced him to withdraw from the 1970 World Cup. A suspected recurrence of this injury in 1973, forced him to retire from the game aged only 26, and prevented him from helping Brazil to retain their title. His club at the time, Vasco da Gama, went on to win the Brazilian National Championship in his absense in 1974.

Weary of fame, Tostao, previously a student of economics, became a doctor, only to resurface in the world of football in the 1990s as a much respected columnist and TV pundit.