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Jorge Paulo Costa Almeida (born 14 October 1971 in Portomarker), Costa, is a former Portuguesemarker professional footballer, and the current coach of S.C. Olhanense.

Nicknamed Bicho (animal) and Tanque (tank) by his colleagues and fans for his aggressive and physical playing style, the central defender was a longtime captain of F.C. Porto, after the retirement of another club legend, right back João Pinto.

Club career

Costa made his professional debuts with F.C. Penafiel, on loan from F.C. Porto. The following season, he was also loaned, to fellow top flight outfit C.S. Marítimo, playing 31 games, including a controversial one in the Estádio das Antasmarker where he scored an own goal. Despite being clearly unintentional, the accusations of "scoring for his team" continued, forcing Porto's president Jorge Nuno Pinto da Costa to forbid further loaned players to play against Porto, a decision that still stands.

In 1992–93, Costa finally joined FC Porto, slowly making his way. Six seasons later, he switched to jersey #2, previously worn by right defender João Domingos Pinto, also being named team captain, as Pinto retired. His career three only met four black spots: two serious knee injuries (during the 1995–96 season, which ruled him out of UEFA Euro 1996 and during 1997's pre-season in Swedenmarker) and a feud with coach Octávio Machado early in the 2001–02 season, which forced him into "exile" at Charlton Athletic. However, the image of Costa as the captain went untouched, and Porto fans turned against Machado with massive criticism of his team management and coaching, eventually forcing him outside the club.

Additionally, in 1996–97's Champions League, Costa was involved in an incident with AC Milan's George Weah, on November 20, 1996, with the Liberianmarker striker breaking his nose, claiming he could not put up with constant racist tauntings. Weah was finally suspended for six matches; Costa, who received no punishment, would be however sidelined for three weeks, also having to undergo facial surgery.

With José Mourinho in charge, Costa returned to Porto next season, and was unanimously chosen as captain of a side that went on to win a championship-cup-UEFA Cup treble, making him the third Porto captain in a row to lift cups at international level (following Pinto and Fernando Gomes). The winning streak for Costa continued as the next season he lifted the UEFA Champions League, adding in December 2004 the Intercontinental Cup.

In January 2006, after having been deemed surplus to requirements by new club coach Co Adriaanse, Costa signed for Standard Liège from Belgiummarker, reuniting with former Porto teammate Sérgio Conceição, and helped his new side to a runner-up spot in the league. He decided to retire from the game (claiming "personal reasons") in June, despite having a running contract until 2007.

In 2006–07, Costa began his coaching career, with Sporting Clube de Braga, but he was fired midway through his second year. He then moved to second level's S.C. Olhanense, in the following campaign, eventually finishing the season as champions, with the Algarve side returning to the first division after 34 years.

International career

At international level, Costa and Fernando Couto were considered the best defensive duo in UEFA Euro 2000. Costa retired from international football after the 2002 FIFA World Cup, having won fifty cap, with two goals.

Previously, in 1991, he was an undisputed starter as the nation lifted the FIFA U-20 World Cup.

Club statistics





  1. Euro 2000 profile; BBC Sport
  2. Charlton complete Costa move; BBC Sport, 18 April 2002
  3. Match report; at RSSSF
  4. Jorge Costa to help Standard fly;, 12 December 2005
  5. Liga lethargy costs Jorge Costa;, 30 October 2007

External links

1990-91 FC Penafiel Portuguese League 23 3
1991-92 Marítimo Portuguese League 31 1
1992-93 FC Porto Portuguese League 8 1
1993-94 13 0
1994-95 13 1
1995-96 21 1
1996-97 26 4
1997-98 13 0
1998-99 33 2
1999-00 31 1
2000-01 20 1
2001-02 6 1

2001-02 Charlton Athletic Premier League 24 0

2002-03 FC Porto Portuguese League 26 2
2003-04 19 1
2004-05 22 1
2005-06 0 0

2005-06 Standard Liège Belgian League 13 0

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