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Factfile: Meet new signing Rui Patricio!

José Mourinho and Roma have made their first foray into the transfer market this summer, bringing goalkeeper Rui Patricio to the Stadio Olimpico.

Clearly it is time we get to know the 33-year-old goalkeeper a bit better - so, without further ado, here's everything you need to know about our new man between the sticks...


The tale of the tape

Full name: Rui Pedro dos Santos Patricio
Date of birth: 15/02/1988
Age: 33
Place of birth: Regueira de Pontes
Nationality: Portuguese
Height: 6'3"
Weight: 84kg


Where it all began

Patricio's footballing journey began in the youth side of hometown club Leiria e Marrazes, but it's not in goal that young Rui first plied his trade.

"Rui really started as a striker, in schools, when he was nine years-old," said João Rocha, Patricio's first coach in Marrazes.

"He was already tall, had a good left foot, but there was a problem – he was slow. But he scored goals..."

It explains Patricio's excellent ability with the ball at his feet, something first seen at Portuguese giants Sporting Lisbon when he made the move to the capital at 12 years of age.

Patricio was given a league debut for Sporting as an 18-year-old in November 2006 and his impact was immediate, saving a 75th-minute penalty that helped seal a 1-0 victory at CS Maritimo.

That was the first of an eventual 467 appearances in the famous green and white, where Patricio collected two Portuguese Cups, a League Cup and another pair of Super Cups in his homeland.

In total, Patricio kept 182 clean sheets in Lisbon and featured in both the UEFA Champions League and Europa League before moving to Premier League outfit Wolverhampton Wanderers in 2018.

He quickly established himself as one of the best 'keepers in England as Wolves first ended a 39-year wait for European football and then reached a first continental quarter-final since 1972 as they went all the way to the last-eight of the 2019-20 Europa League.


A Portugal icon

With a total of 97 caps to his name to date, Patricio has been a stalwart in the Portugal net since making his national team debut against Spain in November 2010.

So much so that he is now the country's most capped goalkeeper in history, surpassing the previous best efforts of fellow legendary stopper Vitor Baia.

Over the last decade, Patricio has featured in two FIFA World Cups, three European Championships and the Confederations Cup.

He was the backbone of Portugal's first ever major international triumph at Euro 2016, saving a vital penalty in the quarter-final shootout win over Poland and keeping clean sheets in each of the three remaining knockout matches - including the 1-0 victory over France in the final.

Patricio also lifted the inaugural UEFA Nations League trophy in 2019, further establishing his legacy as one of his country's greatest in goal.


Did you know?

Patricio is a practising Buddhist and follows the teachings of guru Sri Swami Vishwananda, who travelled with the Portugal national team to France for Euro 2016.

A major part of Sri Swami Vishwananda's teaching is Atma Kriya yoga and it has clearly had an enormous impact on Patricio the player, as much as Patricio the person.

"It keeps me in good health, keeps me good on the inside, and I use these techniques to keep my personal life on form," Patricio told Sky Sports in 2018.

"This also helps in a professional sense because it helps how we feel, how we are and how we feel about what we are doing."


Notable numbers

  • Only Hilario (494) has made more appearances for Sporting than Patricio in the club's history.
     
  • Across his club career, Patricio has kept 219 clean sheets in 593 matches.
     
  • He has also kept the opposition goalless in 46 of his 97 international outings, meaning in nearly every other game Portugal do not concede when Patricio is in goal.
     
  • Patricio's 13 clean sheets in 38 appearances across his first Premier League campaign in 2018-19 set a new club record for Wolves.
     
  • On his arrival at Molineux, Patricio took the unconventional No. 11 shirt for a goalkeeper, in honour of Carl Ikeme - the Wolves player who retired shortly before Patricio's arrival, following treatment for acute leukaemia. Ikeme's No. 1 shirt was thus left vacant.

The man in his own words

"I believe that every goalkeeper has their own way to defend.
No one goalkeeper is like the next. We all have different techniques,
and we all play the game differently."
 

"I do not think that there is any limit [to improving as a player].
I want to continue to improve as the years go by.
In fact, my goal is to improve with every session.
I think that what I strive to do every single day is to become a better goalkeeper.
I work hard on my techniques."
 

"Everything in life requires a bit of faith, but for me it is knowing what is going on inside my head,
inside my soul, and in both our personal lives and professional lives,
we need to know how we are, to be able to have a good life."

 
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