Dirceu José Guimarães, known as Dirceu (Portuguese pronunciation: [dʒiʁˈsew]; 15 June 1952 – 15 September 1995), was a football player from Brazil. He played as an attacking midfielder with many teams, in particular Botafogo and the Brazilian national team, as well as numerous Italian teams in the 1980s–early 1990s.

US Avellino 1986-87 - Walter Schachner e Dirceu.jpg
Walter Schachner and Dirceu with Avellino in 1986–87 season
Personal information
Full name Dirceu José Guimarães
Date of birth (1952-06-15)15 June 1952
Place of birth Curitiba, Brazil
Date of death 15 September 1995(1995-09-15) (aged 43)
Place of death Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Height 1.72 m (5 ft 7 12 in)
Playing position(s) Attacking midfielder
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1970–1972 Coritiba 26 (1)
1973–1976 Botafogo 52 (9)
1976 Fluminense 22 (2)
1977–1978 Vasco da Gama 25 (2)
1978–1979 América 45 (2)
1979–1982 Atlético Madrid 84 (18)
1982–1983 Verona 29 (2)
1983–1984 Napoli 30 (5)
1984–1985 Ascoli 27 (5)
1985–1986 Como 25 (2)
1986–1987 Avellino 23 (6)
1988 Vasco da Gama - (-)
1988 Miami Sharks 17 (5)
1989–1991 Ebolitana 39 (14)
1992 Benevento 11 (4)
1995 Atlético Yucatán ?? (?)
National team
1973–1986 Brazil 44 (7)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only


Dirceu was born at Curitiba, in southern Brazil, on 15 June 1952.

Club careerEdit

In his early career, Dirceu played for Coritiba, Botagofo (1971–1975), Fluminense (1975–1977) and Vasco da Gama in his country, before spending one year in Mexico at América. In 1979, he signed for Spanish side Atlético Madrid, where he remained until 1982, playing 84 games and scoring 18 goals. In 1982, he signed for Italian team Hellas Verona, the first of five Italian Serie A teams which he changed yearly (the last being Avellino in 1986–1987), before returning to Vasco da Gama. In 1988 Dirceu played in the USA for Fort Lauderdale Strikers, and in 1989–1991 he played again in southern Italy, this time for Ebolitana (1989–1992) and Benevento (1991–1992). His last teams was Atlético Yucatán in Mexico, where he ended his career in 1995.

International careerEdit

Dirceu won 44 caps (14 non-official), between June 1973 and May 1986, with the Brazilian national team, scoring seven goals.

He played for Brazil at the 1974, 1978, and 1982 FIFA World Cups. He was due to go to the 1986 edition of the tournament, but was ruled out by injury. He played 11 games and scored three goals in his World Cup appearances. Brazil finished fourth in 1974, while in 1978, he won the Bronze Ball and was named to the team of the tournament after helping Brazil to a third-place finish. He also took part at the 1972 Summer Olympic Games with Brazil.


Dirceu died on the night of 15 September 1995, at the age of 43, when an Opel Ascona driven by a street racer ran a red light and hit his Puma at high speed in Barra da Tijuca, not too far from his apartment. Dirceu and a passenger, who was thrown out of the vehicle following the crash, died immediately. There were two couples in the Ascona; all four of them survived and nobody was prosecuted for Dirceu's death.[1]


The Ebolitana named its arena at Eboli the Stadio José Guimarães Dirceu in his honor.



Vasco da Gama





  1. ^ Bruno, Freitas; Vanderlei, Lima (15 December 2017). "A tragédia de Dirceu". UOL Esportes (in Portuguese). Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo: Grupo Folha. Retrieved 16 December 2017.
  2. ^ "FIFA World Cup Golden Ball Awards". RSSSF. Retrieved 18 October 2015.

External linksEdit

  • Dirceu at National-Football-Teams.com