Thursday, August 11, 2011

Alexandre Pato

Alexandre Pato... when he was 16... enjoy
Alexandre Rodrigues da Silva (born 2 September 1989), commonly known as Alexandre Pato or simply Pato, is a Brazilian professional footballer who plays as a striker for Italian Serie A club Milan and the Brazilian national team. His nickname, Pato, refers to his place of birth, Pato Branco. The literal translation of Pato from Portugese to English is 'The Duck' which has evolved into a common nickname for him.
In June 2006, at only 16 years of age, Pato was signed by Sport Club Internacional to compete in the Campeonato Brasileiro Sub-20. Despite the fact that he was competing against players up to four years older than he was, Pato became top scorer of the competition as Internacional Sub-20 defeated Grêmio 4–0. Ready to join the Inter first team in November that same year, his debut finally happened at the Estádio Palestra Itália against São Paulo giants Palmeiras for the Campeonato Brasileiro. Alexandre Pato met and surpassed any and all expectations of what was expected of him as he scored his first professional goal within the first minute of the game. The rest of his participation was spent dribbling and confusing defenders as he made two assists (and almost scoring another himself) to help Internacional rout Palmeiras 4–1. He was substituted off in the 77th minute.
Pato was included in the Internacional squad that won the 2006 FIFA Club World Cup. During this event, Pato broke Pelé's long standing record as he became the youngest ever player to score in a FIFA organised competition at the age of 17 years and 102 days old against African club champions Al-Ahly. Pelé was 17 years and 239 days old when he scored against Wales during the 1958 FIFA World Cup.
Keeping up with his promising figure, Pato debuted at the Campeonato Gaúcho on February 24 against Veranópolis and scored a goal in the 2–1 victory. He also debuted in Copa Libertadores on 28 February against Emelec of Ecuador (also his first game at Beira-Rio) and scored once during the 3–0 thumping. But the biggest highlight of Pato's time with Internacional was during the Recopa Sudamericana as he helped Internacional win their first ever title. Against Pachuca of Mexico, he scored one goal in the 2–1 defeat in Mexico. But on the return game on June 7 and with more than fifty-one thousand Colorados present, Pato had a luxurious performance as he scored once and led the 4–0 thrashing to win Internacional's third international title.
Incumbent European champions AC Milan officially confirmed the signing of Pato on 2 August 2007,[2] paying nearly €24 million to transfer his contract from Internacional.[3]

Due to FIFA football regulations regarding non-EU minors, Pato was unable to play official matches for Milan until 3 January 2008, when the Italian transfer window and registration reopened.[4] However, Milan was allowed to include the player in friendlies and training beginning 3 September 2007, one day after his 18th birthday. Pato made his non-competitive debut in a 2–2 draw against Dynamo Kiev on 7 September 2007 and scored a header. On 4 January 2008, Pato's transfer to Milan became official.[5]
Pato scored his first Milan goal on his Serie A debut against Napoli in a 5–2 home victory on 13 January 2008. He scored his first brace for Milan, in a 2–0 victory over Genoa at the San Siro on 27 January 2008. He finished the 2007–08 season with 9 goals in 20 appearances (18 in the league).

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