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Thursday, 13 January 2011 15:57

Ex-Portugal goalkeeper Ricardo leaves Betis

Veteran ends Spain spell

Former Portuguese international Ricardo is now officially a free agent, after terminating his deal with Spanish club Real Betis on Thursday.

The 34-year-old had six months left on his deal at the Manuel Luiz de Lopera stadium, but having been frozen out of the first-team squad this season, Ricardo has been allowed to leave early in order to find himself another club during the January transfer window.

The former Boavista and Sporting man was not given a squad number ahead of the current season, and has been training with the club’s lower ranks while running down the final year of his contract. Ricardo has not been a regular for Betis for close to two years, having last seen regular first-team football during the team’s relegation in the 2008/09 season.

“I want to say goodbye to the fans and return all the affection they have shown me over the years,” said Ricardo, who arrived in Spain in 2007. “This is a sad day in my career. I have never gone through such difficult times, but I’ve never seen fans like these. I could not succeed at Betis, but they have so much support and I hope to be here in June to celebrate promotion.”

Ricardo last month indicated that a return home to Portugal would be his preferred destination, suggesting that the experience in Spain has put him off embarking on another foreign adventure.

By Sean Gillen

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Comments (11)
Its not over for Ricardo
11 Saturday, 15 January 2011 04:26
I was looking at some bio`s on some great goal keeprers and one story that sticks to my mind is about Dino Zoff who became a star after a few years in the Italian League and helped Italy win a Euro Cup in 68 but then his career went down hill from there and he was not included in the National team for the 1970 WC, and it wasnt until he moved to Juventus in 72 a whole 4 years later he made a comeback and was sucessful and actually won the 82 WC title at the ripe age of 40. So Ricardo you can do it , just work hard.
Its not over for Ricardo
10 Saturday, 15 January 2011 03:17
At his age he has lots to offer ,he needs a job in Portugal he needs to work every day, and he needs to be with professional trainers to get some techniques worked out and he needs a good shrink to deal with his demons. And with all his experience he has everything to gain by not quitting.
Good luck Ricardo !!
Nothing Supremo about Gino!
9 Saturday, 15 January 2011 00:48
Seriously? Come on, two stupid comments in one day. Roberto has settled in and we have to roll with him and thats it.
He's not good enough for Braga.
8 Friday, 14 January 2011 20:03
Go to Braga!!!
7 Friday, 14 January 2011 13:57
Ricardo should go to Braga, where he can keep Quim company. They can sit on the bench and talk about the good'ol days and show each other oictures of their grand kids etc. - OK I'm just kidding. I really like Ricardo and will never forget that WC game against England - it was awesome. But he should consider hanging up his boots...
Easy there
6 Friday, 14 January 2011 03:50
I had some good memories but there is no way I would want him at Benfica at this point lol. He hasn't played in so long and he has been going down hill since 06. Also Roberto has really started to shine the past few months and he's still young, so I would rather stick with a keeper that can continue to grow.

Jose - Canada, I say we lost that Euro because our players got greedy with the ball and didn't pass to get the goals in the net. I was mostly ticket at a CR (young and too much pressure) and Deco (I got no clue what go into him that game but he just kept hogging the ball and taking horrible shots when he should have passed). I will always remember that the game was lost on extremely poor finishing. Most frustrating game I watched of my life.
better then roberto?
5 Thursday, 13 January 2011 19:17
maybe in penalties but why would Benfica just give up on Roberto when he is actually having a good season yes at the start of the season he was horrible but now he is making some great saves and he has saved us in a few games at the same time we lost many points because of him but we cant froget that the strikers have a job to and at the begining of the season cardozo and saviola werent doing anything but anyway i have full confidence in ROBERTO although QUIM is still my favorite keeper
Not so good memories
4 Thursday, 13 January 2011 17:47
I wish the guy nothing but the best!! the one thing I could never forget is that Portugal had 17 shots, Greece had 1 shot, and they won 1-0 over Portugal. His inability to deal with corner kicks , and come out of his net on free kicks. cost Portugal a European Cup, and an early exit at the hands of the Germans in the World Cup. Portugal had better goalies than Ricardo, but thanks to BIG PHIL we will never know!!!
3 Thursday, 13 January 2011 17:37
Come to Benfica. You are 100x better than Roberto. Sad to hear these last couple of years wasted. Ricardo deserves better and is severely underated when people on here talk sh*t about him. Even Eduardo was fantastic for us last year but Ricardo is #1. The only one. May the memories never be forgotten.
done and done...
2 Thursday, 13 January 2011 17:00
Ricky my boy, its time to call it a career..you were wonderful in your prime, but cmon, at 35?, you arent Kahn, Van der Sar, or Leinmann. I could see a lower team in Portugal maybe snag him up, but otherwise, no way. He gave Portugal all he could from 04-08, was a great keeper then, now is a diff story...good luck Ricardo, whereva you land..
Great memories
1 Thursday, 13 January 2011 16:37
This guy went down hill quick after the WC in 06. As horrible as he’s been for the past few years I will always have great memories of him being the hero 2x over England in the Euro04 and WC 06. For that I will always have respect for this guy. All the best in finding a new club and hopefully it’s a team in Portugal.

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