Émerson Leão (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈɛmeʁsõ leˈɐ̃w]; born 11 July 1949) is a Brazilian head coach and former football player. He is regarded by pundits as one of best Brazilian goalkeepers of all time. A documentary video produced by FIFA, FIFA Fever, called him the third-most impressive defense player of all time. He was born in Ribeirão Preto, São Paulo.
|Full name||Émerson Leão|
|Date of birth||11 July 1949|
|Place of birth||Ribeirão Preto, Brazil|
|Height||1.79 m (5 ft 10 1⁄2 in)|
|Portuguesa (Manager consult)|
|1978–1980||Vasco da Gama||24||(0)|
|1991–1992||XV de Piracicaba|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of June 3, 2012|
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of December 12, 2008
He was a FIFA World Cup champion in 1970 as a reserve player, at age 20. He then played the two following World Cups as first team player. He was the first Brazilian goalkeeper in history to be team captain (during the 1978 World Cup). Dida repeated the feat in 2006 in a group stage match against Japan. In the 1986 World Cup, Leão was a reserve player.
He played 80 times for the Brazilian national football team. At club level, he played for several clubs, his longest term being at Palmeiras, where he won several titles, like Campeonato Brasileiro and Campeonato Paulista.
Leão has been a manager since 1987. He was São Paulo manager in 2005, winning the Campeonato Paulista of that year. He then moved to Vissel Kobe of Japan, where he stayed for only four matches. On 18 July 2005, he became the manager of Palmeiras, a position he held until March 2006. His peak as a manager was his second period at Santos, between 2002 and 2004, when he won the Campeonato Brasileiro in 2002, and was runner-up in both Copa Libertadores de América and Campeonato Brasileiro in 2003. Leão is often seen as a hardliner, since he demands perfect physical shape of his players, along with discipline and mutual respect. He is not fond of having well-known players on his teams, since he believes that this might cause relationship problems within the squad.
He was the manager of the Brazil nation team from 15 November 2000 until 9 June 2001. From 11 matches, his Brazil side won 4, drew 4 and lost 3. Like his predecessor Vanderlei Luxemburgo, he struggled having top players available for qualifying matches. He tried to centre the squad around Romário and younger players with little international experience. He also became the first sitting coach to travel to Europe to assess his players' activities there, where he was asked by the Europeans to not release Rivaldo and Roberto Carlos for matches that were not crucial.
Leão was dismissed by Atlético Mineiro on 4 May 2009 following a defeat to arch-rivals Cruzeiro in the final of a regional championship. This ended his third stint as Atlético head coach. On 3 June 2009, Sport Recife's have signed the coach for the up-coming 2009 Brasileirão championship. On 26 April 2010, Leão was named as the new manager of Goiás. On 24 October 2011, São Paulo announced it had hired Leão for a second managerial spell in charge of the club.
Leão is known for his controversial attitudes and declarations.
In 1997, after a game between his Atlético Mineiro and Argentine side Lanús in the Conmebol Cup final, Leão was involved in a massive fight with adversaries. Leão had to rebuild his face after the incident.
In 2002, when he coached Santos, and Peixe faced Paysandu, Leão was involved again in a fight. This time, when his players faced policemen, the coach received an aggression in his eyes by a pepper spray.
In 2006, then coaching Palmeiras, Leão had problems with television pundit Milton Neves, that had kicked another television pundit, Sílvio Luiz, according to Leão. Leão said to Neves: "When you kicked Silvio Luiz's ass, a 70-year-old man, you boasted. Come to kick mine!"
In 2010, training Goiás, Leão discussed again with two another television pundits, Renata Fan and Neto. According to Leão, Neto "would not have psychological conditions to speak in a television channel". But the problems between them would happen since 1989, when Leão coached Neto in Palmeiras.
Again in 2013, Leão said that Juvenal Juvêncio, president of São Paulo, club that he coached for two times (between 2004 and 2005 and, after, between 2011 and 2012), should abdicate, for his age, of his position, making like pope Benedict XVI. Juvêncio answered to Leão, saying that the coach "needs to find another job soon".
|1979||Vasco da Gama||Série A||14||0|
|1986||Sport Recife||Série A||0||0|
|Brazil national team|
- 1969 – Campeonato Brasileiro and Ramón de Carranza Trophy (Palmeiras)
- 1972 – Campeonato Paulista and Campeonato Brasileiro (Palmeiras)
- 1973 – Campeonato Brasileiro (Palmeiras)
- 1974 – Campeonato Paulista and Ramón de Carranza Trophy (Palmeiras)
- 1976 – Campeonato Paulista (Palmeiras)
- 1978 – Campeonato Brasileiro runner-up (Palmeiras)
- 1979 – Campeonato Brasileiro runner-up (Vasco do Gama)
- 1980 – Campeonato Gaúcho (Grêmio)
- 1981 – Campeonato Brasileiro (Grêmio)
- 1982 – Campeonato Brasileiro runner-up (Grêmio)
- 1983 – Campeonato Paulista (Corinthians)
- 1987 – Campeonato Brasileiro (Sport Recife)
- Shimizu S Pulse
- 1992 – Kanagawa Cup (Shimizu S Pulse)
- Verdy Kawasaki
- 1996 – Emperor's Cup (Verdy Kawasaki)
- Atlético Mineiro
- Santos FC
- São Paulo
- 2005 – Campeonato Paulista (São Paulo)
- "Brazil's greatest goalkeepers". Sky Sports. July 2, 2010. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
- Christopher Atkins (January 10, 2013). "Ranking Brazil's 10 Best Goalkeepers of All Time". Bleacher Report. Retrieved January 21, 2019.
- Leao fired by Atletico Mineiro ESPN Soccernet Retrieved on May 4, 2009
- "Emerson Leão é o novo treinador do Sport". O Globo. June 3, 2009. Retrieved June 3, 2009.
- "Emerson Leao hired as Sao Paulo manager for the second time in his career". Fox Sports. October 24, 2011.
- "Emerson Leão é o novo treinador do São Caetano" (in Portuguese). Gazeta Esportiva. August 30, 2012. Retrieved August 30, 2012.
- on YouTube
- "Cueca, agressões e ironias; relembre 25 polêmicas de Leão".
- Emerson Leão faz duras críticas a Neto e Renata Fan
- "Jogadores elegem Emerson Leão como o pior técnico em pesquisa do UOL Esporte".
- "Leão dá dica a Juvenal: 'Faça como o Papa, renuncie pela idade'".
- "Juvenal Juvêncio responde a Leão: 'Precisa arrumar um emprego logo'".
- "Émerson Leão". National Football Teams. Benjamin Strack-Zimmerman.
- J.League Data Site(in Japanese)
- "Matches of FIFA XI".
- Enciclopédia do Futebol Brasileiro, Volume 2 – Lance, Rio de Janeiro: Aretê Editorial S/A, 2001.
- Seleção Brasileira – 90 Anos – Rio de Janeiro: MAUAD, 2004.