Football (fútbol) is one of the most popular recreational sports in Bolivia. As a football-loving nation, Bolivia has produced some of the soccer greats that have been known the world over for their skills and individual contribution to the sport. Some of these names have become synonymous with soccer itself.
Bolivia’s national football / soccer team, nicknamed La Verde or the Green One is managed and controlled by the Federación Boliviana de Fútbol. Bolivia has been active in the international football scene, although the team has not always made any significant impact in major events. Still, the team played in the 1930 and 1950 FIFA World Cups. The Bolivian squad’s most recent qualifying was in the 1994 World Cup Qualifiers, where the team had some notable wins.
However, while the Bolivian squad has not gone past the first round of any World Cup championships, it has won the Copa America once, in 1963. The Bolivian national football team is currently ranked 65th in the world, and their best FIFA ranking in history was 18th. While the soccer squad did not qualify for the 2010 FIFA World Cup Finals, the team had notable performances in the season qualifiers, particularly with wins against Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina and Peru.
Born on September 27, 1970, Marco Antonio Etcheverry Vargas is considered Bolivia’s best-known football great, having played for the Bolivian national football team from 1989 to 2003. Etcheverry started his senior career in 1986 with the Destroyers and he had stints with Bolivar, Spanish club Albacete Balompie, Chilean club Colo Colo, Colombian America de Cali, and American team DC United. He had also been on loan with Barcelona SC, Emelec and Oriente Petrolero later in his career.
Etcheverry was capped for the Bolivian national soccer team 71 times since 1989, and he has made 13 goals for the team until retirement from the squad in 2003. Etcheverry was part of the team during the 1994 FIFA World Cup. Marco was announced as coach for Oriente Petrolero in 2009, but negotiations fell through.
Julio César Baldivieso
Born on December 2, 1971, Julio César Baldivieso Rico was a former midfielder in the Bolivian national football team. His senior career debuted with Wilstermann, and he had stints with Bolivar, Newell’s Old Boys, Yokohama Marinos, Barcelona SC, Cobreloa, Al-Nasr, Aurora, Al-Wakra, Caracas FC, Deportivo Quevedo, and The Strongest. Baldivieso is nicknamed “El Emperador,” which means “the emperor.”
Baldivieso’s career with the Bolivian national soccer team began in 1991 in a friendly match with Paraguay. He has been capped for the team 85 times, where he has scored 15 goals. He played for the Bolivian squad in the 1994 FIFA World Cup, and had been part of several Copa America games in his career until he retired from the national team in 2005.
Baldivieso retired from professional football in 2008, and managed Aurora from 2008 to 2009. His son, Mauricio Baldivieso is the youngest ever football player to have played a professional match, at 12 years old during a July 2009 match.
Born on August 31, 1969, Luis Hector Cristaldo Ruiz Diaz is a midfielder who played for Guabira. He holds the record for most caps for Bolivia’s national football team. His senior career debuted with Oriente Petrolero in 1988 and Cristaldo had stints with Bolivar, Textil Mandiyu (loan), Sporting de Gijon, Cerro Porteno, and the Strongest.
Cristaldo was part of the Bolivian squad from 1989 to 2005, where he was capped for a record 93 times and goaled five times, and is notable for his participation in the 1994 FIFA World Cup. He retired from professional football in 2007.
Marco Antonio Sandy Sansusty was born on August 29, 1971 and was a former defender for the Bolivian national football team. Sandy started his professional career with Bolivar in 1990, from which he retired in 2006. In between, Sandy had stints with Spain’s Real Valladolid, Argentina’s Gimnasia de Jujuy and Mexico’s Tampico Madero.
Sandy was part of the Bolivian national soccer squad from 1993 to 2006, having played 93 international matches for the country, only equaled by Luis Cristaldo. Sandy was part of the Bolivian team that played at the 1994 FIFA World Cup.
José Milton Melgar
José Milton Melgar Soruco was born on September 20, 1959, and was formerly midfielder for the Bolivian national soccer team. His senior career started in 1979 with Blooming, and he had stints with Boca Juniors, River Plate, Bolivar, Oriente Petrolero, Everton, the Strongest, Cobreloa, and Real Santa Cruz before finally retiring from Blooming in 1997.
Melgar joined the Bolivian squad in 1980 and was capped 89 times until 1997. He played in all of Bolivia’s 1994 FIFA World Cup matches. After retirement, Melgar pursued a managerial career, debuting with Oriente Petrolero and Blooming in 2000. He had been appointed as Bolivia’s Minister of Sports in 2006, but resigned after a year to focus on running his own youth football academy.
Carlos Fernando Borja
Born on December 25, 1956, Carlos Fernando Borja Bolivar played midfield for the Bolivian national football team from 1979 to 1995. He played professionally for Bolivar from 1977 to 1997 as a “one club man” as he did not change teams for the entirety of his career. Borja scored 129 league goals for the club, and is the third highest goal-scorer in the Bolivian league to date.
Borja was first capped for the Bolivia national team in 1979 and was part of the squad during the 1994 FIFA World Cup. After retirement in 1997, Borja successfully pursued a career in politics.
Juan Manuel Peña
Juan Manuel Peña Montaño was born on January 17, 1973 and was formerly central defender for the Bolivian national team. While Peña spent most of his professional career with Spain, he started his senior career with Blooming in 1990 before having stints with Santa Fe, Valladolid, Villareal, Celta and finally with DC United in 2010.
Peña was part of the Bolivian national football team from 1991 to 2009, where he played in the 1994 FIFA World Cup against Spain. He has also appeared in five Copa Americas. Prior to retirement in 2009, Peña also participated in the qualifiers for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Miguel Ángel Rimba
Miguel Ángel Rimba Alvis was born on November 1, 1967 and played defender for 80 international matches with the Bolivian national football team. His senior career debuted with Bolivar in 1988 and he has had stints with Atletico Tucuman, Oriente Petrolero and Real Santa Cruz before retiring with Aurora in 2003.
Rimba was part of the Bolivian squad from 1989 to 2000, and has played in the 1994 FIFA World Cup. Rimba was also part of the Bolivian squad that reached the finals in the 1997 Copa America.
Óscar Carmelo Sánchez
Óscar Carmelo Sánchez, born on July 16, 1971, was a sweeper for the Bolivia national soccer squad, and had been captain of the Bolivia team several times. His career debuted with the Strongest in 1991, and he had stints with Gimnasia de Jujuy, Independiente and Bolivar before returning to play for, and manage, the Strongest in 2007.
Sanchez’ career with the Bolivia national football team started in 1994 in a friendly game with Romania. He was then made part of the 1994 FIFA World Cup. Sanchez had to retire from professionally playing in early 2007 due to health problems. He managed the Strongest shortly during that year until he eventually retired due to health reasons. Sanchez died on November 23, 2007.
Born on January 19, 1974, Jaime Moreno Morales formerly played as a forward for the Bolivian national football team. His career debuted in 1991 with Blooming, and he had stints with Independiente Santa Fe, Middlesbrough, DC United and Metro Stars until his retirement in 2010. Moreno’s career with the national fútbol team spanned from 1991 to 2008, where he was part of the 1994 FIFA World Cup and the 1997 Copa America. He likewise played for the team in the 2007 Copa America, and retired from the squad in 2008.
Moreno retired in 2010 after not being picked in the 2010 MLS Re-Entry Draft, and is now technical training coach for the DC United’s Youth Academy.
Joaquín Botero Vaca was born on December 10, 1977 and is currently a forward for the Bolivian national football team. Botero’s senior career started in 1997 with Mariscal Braun, and he has had stints with Deportivo Municipal, Bolivar, Pumas, San Lorenzeo de Almagro, Deportivo Tachira, Bolivar, Correcaminos UAT and Al-Arabi. He currently plays forward for San Jose.
Botero was a member of Bolivia’s national soccer squad from 1999 to 2009, which included appearances in the 1999 FIFA Confederations Cup, 2001 Copa America and 2004 Copa America. He scored a hat-trick for the team in the 2010 World Cup qualifiers. Botero was capped 48 times for international games, and currently holds the record of 20 goals for the Bolivian national squad.
Born on May 5, 1926, Víctor Agustín Ugarte was a striker for the Bolivian national football team. His career started in 1947, playing for Bolivar. He had stints with Argentina’s San Lorenzeo and Colombian Once Caldas before returning to Bolivar, where he played until his retirement in 1966.
Ugarte played for Bolivian national football team from 1947 to 1963, and was part of the Bolivian squad that won the 1963 Copa America. Ugarte holds the record for having the second most goals made for the Bolivian squad in international games, at 16 goals in 45 international appearances. Ugarte lived in poverty during his last years and died from an illness on March 20, 1995. In his honor the stadium in Potosi was named after him. Potosi is a silver-rich department in Bolivia, one of UNESCO’s World Heritage sites and one of the highest cities in the world, a fitting tribute to a football player who had contributed so much to his country.
Carlos Aragonés Espinoza was born on February 16, 1956 and has played midfielder for the Bolivian national fútbol team. He still ranks in third place for most goals for the Bolivian squad. Aragonés’ senior career started in 1976 with Bolivar, and he had stints with Palmeiras, Cortiba and Destroyers, where he retired in 1985.
Aragonés first made an appearance on the Bolivian squad in 1977, where he played 31 national games, scoring 15 goals. This includes three goals for the 1979 Copa America, which the squad won. After retiring from professional football in 1985, Aragonés went on to manage football clubs and teams, starting in 1991 with Real Santa Cruz, The Strongest, Blooming, Oriente Petrolero and Bolivar. Aragonés has managed the Bolivian national team from 2000 to 2001 and is currently managing Blooming.
Erwin Sánchez Freking was born on October 19, 1969, and has played for the Bolivian national soccer team as midfielder with scoring capacity. His professional career debut was with the Destroyers in 1987. He had stints with Bolivar, Benfica, Estoril, Boavista, and Oriente Petrolero.
Sanchez was part of the Bolivian national squad from 1989 to 2005, and had participated in the 1994 FIFA World Cup. After retirement from professional football, Sanchez managed Boavista in 2004 and the Bolivian national team in 2006 to 2009. He was, however, replaced after the Bolivian squad’s unsuccessful performance in the 2010 World Cup qualifiers.
Miguel Gastón Aguilar Egüez was born on September 29, 1953 and was formerly a member of the Bolivian national football team. His senior career started in 1977 with Oriente Petrolero, and he had stints with Bolivar, The Strongest, Argentine team Ferro Carril Oeste, Blooming and finally with the Destroyers until he retired in 1988.
Aguilar debuted with the Bolivian national soccer team in 1977 and had scored 10 goals in 34 games until his retirement from the squad in 1983. He then managed Bolivian football clubs after retirement from playing, at one point being assistant coach of the national team in 2004.
Born on July 4, 1963, Wílliam Luis Ramallo Fernández was a former striker for the Bolivian national football team. Nicknamed “El Pescador del Area” and “El Fantasma” Ramallo debuted with the Destroyers in 1989 and had a stint with Oriente Petrolero prior to playing for Club Jorge Wilstermann until his retirement in 1997.
Ramallo joined the Bolivian squad in 1989, and had been capped 36 times since then, scoring 9 goals for the team until his retirement from international football in 1997. Ramallo was part of the Bolivian squad that played in the 1994 FIFA World Cup, and played starting forward. He is currently an assistant coach for the Bolivian national football team.
The current Bolivian national soccer team is composed of 20 capped players who were recently selected for friendly games in August and September 2011. This list also includes the recent Bolivian national football team lineup in recent international matches.
Born in La Paz, Bolivia on August 25, 1975, Sergio Daniel Galarza Soliz currently plays for Blooming. His career started with Real Santa Cruz in 1997. He had also played for Bolivar, Wilstermann, Oriente Petrolero and Guabira staying only from one to three seasons in each club. He joined the Bolivian national football team in 2000, and has been the starting goalkeeper in the Bolivian squad’s first two 2007 Copa America games and has a total of 14 caps. He is one of the sons of former goalkeeper and football manager Luis Esteban Galarza who was active from the 1970s to the early 1990s.
Born on November 3, 1978 in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Daniel Vaca currently plays for Bolivian football club The Strongest as a goalkeeper. He started his professional career with Blooming in 2000, and had stints with the Destroyers, San Jose Oruro and Jorge Wilstermann Cochabamba. Vaca has played for the Bolivian national team since 2010, and participated in the 2010 Copa America.
Carlos Erwin Arias
Carlos Erwin Arias Égüez was born on April 27, 1980 in Portachuelo, Bolivia and plays goalkeeper for Córdoba. His career started with Blooming in 1998, and he had stints with The Strongest, on loan from 2003 to 2005, Club Bolivar and Israel football club Maccabi Netanya because he received a 20-game suspension in his home country prior to signing up with Córdoba CF. He was first capped for the Bolivian national football squad in 2001, and had been capped for the team 36 times. Arias participated in the 2001 Copa America and is included in the team’s 2011 Copa America lineup.
Carlos Emilio Lampe Poras was born in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia on March 17, 1987, and currently plays as a goalkeeper for Club Deportivo San José based in Oruro, Bolivia. He spent his youth football career with Blooming, staying there for one year before he debuted in his senior career with Universitario in 2006. Lampe had stints with Bolivar and Guabira and back to Universitario prior to signing up for San José in 2011. A regular choice as goalkeeper by the Bolivian national football team, Lampe first appeared in the squad’s under-20 division in 2007. He has been capped thrice for the senior national team since 2010, and got MVP awards in several Copa Nissan Sudamericana games in 2010.
Lorgio Álvarez Roca also hails from Santa Cruz de la Sierra where he was born on June 29, 1978. Currently playing as defensive midfielder for Club Bolivar, his senior career started with Blooming in 1995 where he made 182 appearances and ten goals. He has since played with Oriente Petrolero, Cerro Porteno, Independiente, Libertad and Blooming, each for one season. Alvarez joined the Bolivian national squad in 1999, and has been capped for the 2001, 2004 and 2007 Copas America. He is likewise part of the Bolivian national football squad that will play in the 2011 Copa America.
Born on November 4, 1981, Enrique Parada Salvatierra currently plays defensive midfield for The Strongest. He hails from Huacaraje, Bolivia. His senior career debut was with Club Deportivo San José, where he played from 2002 to 2009. Parada then moved to Club Bolivar in 2010, before finally settling with The Strongest in 2011. Parada has been with the Bolivian national soccer team from 2007 onwards and has three international caps. He is a part of the current 2011 Copa America lineup.
Ronald Raldes Balcázar was born on April 20, 1981 and also came from Santa Cruz de la Sierra. He currently plays in the Argentine Colón de Santa Fe club as center back. Raldes’ senior career debut was with Santa Cruz team Club Destroyers in 1998 and stayed there until 1999, making a total of 64 appearances. He had stints with Oriente Petrolero from 2000 to 2003, where was his most productive, kicking 9 goals in 131 appearances for the club. He was also with Rosario Central, Saudi Arabia football club Al-Hilal, Cruz Azul and Maccabi Tel Aviv. In 2001, he was capped for the Bolivian under-20 squad and has since been part of Bolivia’s national football team to date.
Another player from Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Luis Alberto Gutiérrez Herrera was born on January 15, 1985, He currently plays as a defender for the Bolivian national football squad playing as a left back and is contracted with Club Deportivo Oriente Petrolero where he also debuted in his senior football career in 2004. He was sent on loan in 2009 to Hapoel Ironi Kiryat Shmona Football Club in Israel and played 16 games for the club. Gutierrez was first capped for the Bolivian national football team in 2007 and has been capped for 20 times since. He is currently part of the 2011 Copa America lineup.
Christian Israel Vargas Claros was born in Cochabamba on September 8, 1983. He plays right defender for Club Deportivo San José. His debut for his professional soccer career was with Wilstermann in 2004, and he has played for The Strongest and Blooming with stints with Wilstermann in between. Vargas has been capped 4 times with the Bolivian national soccer team since 2008, and he will be playing at the 2011 Copa America.
Ronald Lorgio Suarez Saucedo was born on December 5, 1990 and another Bolivan soccer player who hails from Santa Cruz de la Sierra. Suarez currently plays for Bolivian team Blooming. Suarez’ professional career debut was with Club Deportivo Oriente Petrolero in 2009. After a year he moved to Blooming on loan in 2011 before finally signing with the club. His national football team debut was with the Bolivian under-17 squad in 2007 and he has served as captain with the squad’s under-20 team since 2009. He has been capped 4 times while playing in the under-20 Bolivian national football team. Lorgio now has been capped three times since 2010 while playing for the senior side of the national squad.
Born on January 29, 1980, 31-year old Ronald Tylor Rivero Kuhn is a defender currently playing for Shenzhen Ruby FC, a team that is part of the Chinese Super League. Rivero is one of many Bolivian football players who came from Santa Cruz de la Sierra. His professional football career started with Club Deportivo Universitario San Francisco Xavier in 2006. After three seasons with the club he was on loan to Club Bolivar from 2010 to 2011 before he got contracted to play for Shenzhen in 2011. Rivero was capped for the Bolivian national squad in 2008 and has had 15 caps so far.
Another player who came from Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Luis Javier Méndez Moza was born on July 12, 1985. He currently plays as a defender for The Strongest. Mendez’ senior football career started with Oriente Petrolero in 2005. After two seasons with Oriente Petrolero he has one season stint with The Strongest before going back to Oriente for one year. He later joined San José for a season before accepting a contract to play for The Strongest once again. Méndez had been called up for the Bolivia national soccer squad since 2008, and he is currently included in the 2011 Copa America lineup. To date Méndez has six international caps.
Miguel Angel Hoyos Guzman was also born in Santa Cruz de la Sierra on March 3, 1981, and currently plays right defender for Oriente Petrolero, where his senior career debuted in 2002. In between he was on loan to The Strongest and had one season stints with Bolivar and Hapoel Tel Aviv prior to his return to Oriente Petrolero. Hoyos was first capped for the Bolivian national squad in 2005, and has been capped 24 times since, with one goal.
It seems that Santa Cruz de la Sierra is a breeding ground for Bolivian footballers. Another resident who currently is a member of the Bolivian national soccer tema is Santos Amador Quispe, who was born on April 6, 1982. Quispe plays as a defender for his current football team Nacional Potosi, one of the oldest football teams in Bolivia. His senior career started in 2002 with Guabira, and he had stints with San Jose, Real Potosi, Wilstermann and The Strongest. Amador joined the Bolivia’s national football squad in 2007 and so far has been capped five times.
Edemir Rodriguez Mercado was born on October 21, 1986 in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia. Mercado currently plays as a defender for Club Bolivar. He debuted with Real Potosi in 2004and played with the club for six years making 194 game appearances and kicking 10 goals. He moved to Club Bolivar in 2011. Since 2006, Rodriguez was capped twelve times for the Bolivian national soccer squad and has had one goal in his international career.
Nicolás Suárez Vaca was born on December 23, 1978. He is from Santa Ana del Yacuma, Bolivia and currently plays defense for Club San Jóse. His senior career debut was for the football club Guabira. Suárez has had stints with Blooming, Real Potosi and Oriente Petrolero. He debuted with the Bolivian national football team in 1999 in a friendly match against Paraguay, and had appeared five times for the team from then until 2007.
Born on February 12, 1990 Rudy Alejandro Cardozo Fernandez is from Tarija, Bolivia. He is currently plays midfield for Club Bolivar, where he made his senior debut in 2009. Part of the under-17 team in 2007, Cardozo played in Bolivia’s national football team in 2009 at the South American Youth Championship under-20 division. His senior international career started in 2010 in a friendly match against Colombia. Cardozo is part of the 2011 Copa America lineup. He already has 10 caps playing for the senior side of the national soccer team of Bolivia and has one goal to his name.
From Oruro, Bolivia comes Walter Alberto Flores Condarco who was born on October 29, 1978. His senior career as a midefielder started in 2000 with Club Deportivo San Jóse where he stayed for six years. After his contract expired he joined Real Potosi for one season and the Strongest before signing a contract with Club Bolivar in 2009. Flores has been capped for the Bolivian team 20 times since 2004, and he is currently included in the 2011 Copa America lineup.
José Luis Chávez
José Luis Chávez Sánchez from Santa Cruz de la Sierra was born on May 18, 1986. He is currently contracted with Blooming as a midfielder. Chávez started his senior career with Blooming in 2004 and played for two seasons before beign loaned to the Destroyers in 2007 and to Universitario in 2008 prior to returning to his home team. Chavez was first capped for the Bolivian national soccer team in 2009 for a qualifying game against Peru. He is in the current lineup for the 2011 Copa America. He has a total of six international caps playing with the Bolivian national football squad.
Jaime Robles Céspedes was born in Montero, Santa Cruz, Bolivia on February 2, 1978 and is a midfielder for Club Aurora based in Cochabamba. Robles’ debut was in 2004 with football club the Destroyers. He immediately transferred to and had stints with San Jóse, La Paz FC, Universitario and Blooming between 2005 and 2009. Robles was first capped for the Bolivian soccer squad in 2008 and has earned 19 caps. He is in the team’s current 2011 Copa America lineup.
Joselito Vaca Velasco, also from Santa Cruz de la Sierra was born on August 12, 1982. He is an attacking midfielder currently playing for Oriente Petrolero, where his senior career debuted in 1999. After one season with the club Vaca played for Dallas Burn, Metro Stars and Blooming in a span of seven seasons prior to returning to Oriente Petrolero in 2009. During his return to Oriente Petrolero, Vaca has made a total of 93 appearances for the club and has a personal goal tally of seventeen. Vaca was capped for the Bolivian under-20 football team in 2001, and he has played for the senior team since 2002, with a total of 45 caps and two goals. Vaca played for Bolivia in the 2007 Copa America.
Samuel Galindo Suheiro was born April 18, 1992 in Santa Cruz, Bolivia and currently plays midfielder for Spanish team Gimnastic de Tarragona on loan from Arsenal football club. His youth soccer career started with Real America where he played in the 2009-2010 season. His senior career debuted with Arsenal in 2010, and he had once also been on loan to Salamanca. His international football career started in 2009 with the Bolivian under-17 and under-20 teams, where he served as captain. In 2010, he appeared in a friendly match against Mexico. Galindo is in the current Bolivian soccer team lineup for Copa America 2011 and has earned a total of two international caps for the senior side.
Born on November 17, 1985 Edivaldo Rojas Hermoza plays forward for the Bolivian team. His father is Brazilian and his mother is from Bolivia and he was born in Cuiaba, Brazil. Hermoza prefers his nickname Bolivia. His senior career started with Atletico Paranaense in 2004 and he had been on loan to Ferroviaria, Figueirense, Rio Preto, Caldense and Guaratingueta from 2005 to 2008 before he moved to Naval in 2008. In 2011, Hermoza joined Greek club Iraklis where he current plays as a forward. He was first capped for the Bolivian national football team in 2011 in a match against Paraguay in the Copa Paz del Chaco. He is likewise part of the Bolivian squad in the current 2011 Copa America lineup, and has scored the opening goal of the tournament.
Alejandro Saúl Chumacero Bracamonte was born on April 22, 1991 in La Paz, Bolivia and currently plays as a midfielder with The Strongest, where his senior career debuted in 2007. His international career started in 2009, when Bolivian national soccer team coach Erwin Sanchez invited him to the squad. His first match was in 2010 in a friendly game against Mexico.
Pablo Daniel Escobar Olivetti was born in Asuncion, Paraguay on February 23, 1978. His youth soccer career was spent on Olimpia where he also debuted for his senior professional career in 1999. After one season with Olimpia he moved to several clubs such as Jujuy, San Jose, Cerro Porteño, The Strongest, Ipatinga (on loan), Santo Andre (on loan), Mirassol (on loan), Ponte Preta and Botafongo-SP. While he has previous one season stints with The Strongest, he finally decided to join the club and currently plays attacking midfielder for The Strongest. His international career with Bolivia’s national soccer squad started in 2008 after receiving Bolivian citizenship. He has since earned ten international caps for the senior side.
Another Bolivian soccer player to come from Santa Cruz de la Sierra is Mauricio Saucedo Guardia who was born on August 14, 1985. Sarcedo currently holds the position of an attacking midfielder and second striker for Vitoria SC, a football club based in Guimaraes, Portugal. His senior soccer career started with Club Bolivar in 2003, and he had stints with Iberoamericana, La Paz F.C., San Jose, Universitario, Chornomorets Odesa and Oriente Petrolero prior to signing up with Vitoria in 2011. Saucedo was first capped for the Bolivian national football squad in 2008 and has been capped 12 times since then.
From the large crop of Bolivian soccer players from Santa Cruz de ala Sierra comes Jhasmani Campos Davalos who was born on May 10, 1988, Campos plays midfield for Bolivar. He started quite young and played with the Tahuichi Academy for eight seasons and one season with Gremio. His debut for his senior football career was in 2006 with Oriente Petrolero. He played a total of 152 games for the club and kicked 26 goals prior to his move to Bolivar in 2011. Campos joined Bolivia’s under-17 squad in 2007 for the South American Youth Championship in Paraguay. He was called up to the seniors that same year, playing for the Bolivian national team in the 2007 Copa America and currently has earned 17 caps.
Jesús Alejandro Gómez Lanza was born on July 18, 1979 in La Paz, Bolivia and plays midfield for Blooming where his career debuted in 1997. Like fellow national team mate Campos, he started youth football with Tahuichi Academy. He is also the current team captain for Blooming. He had been on loan to Wilstermann and San Jose during his career. His international career started in 2007 and he has had 8 appearances for the Bolivian national football team since then. Gomez was named best football player for the year by Bolivian sports media in 2010.
Born on January 13, 1983, Miguel Oswaldo Loayza Tardio plays as a midfielder for San Jose. He hails from Santa Cruz de la Sierra, too. His senior career started in 2001 with Club Bolivar, and he had stints with Real Potosi and Universitario and then went back to Real Potosi in 2008 staying for three seasons. He started in his current club in 2011. His first call up for the national football team of Bolivia was on June 7, 2011 for a game against Paraguay.
Alex da Rosa
Born on June 1, 1967 in Santiago, Bolivia, Alex Rodrigo da Rosa Comelles plays attacking midfielder for Club Bolivar. His senior career debuted with Caxias in 1995, and has since played for several clubs including São Bento, Uberlandia EC, San Jose, Oriente Petrolero, Serrano FC, MTK Budapest FC, Mariscal Braun, The Strongest, Bonner SC, Deportes Tolima, Aurora and Blooming. Da Rosa has been capped five times for the Bolivian national football squad since 2004, and has scored his first goal for the team in 2009 against Argentina.
Juan Carlos Arce
Born on April 10, 1985 in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Juan Carlos Arce Justiniano currently plays as forward winger for Oriente Petrolero, where his senior career debuted in 2003. He also came from the youth football systems of Tahuichi Academy and Oriente Petrolero. He has been on loan with Portuguesa, Corinthians, Alarabi, Seongnam Ilhwa Chunma and Sport Recife, and has likewise played for Terek Grozny prior to returning to Oriente Petrolero in 2011. Arce was first capped for the Bolivian national soccer squad in 2004, and has been capped 23 times since and has booted four goals. Arce played in the 2007 Copa America, and has goaled against Venezuela, and is likewise part of the Bolivian national squad for the 2011 Copa America.
Another Santa Cruz de la Sierra native, Alcides Peña Jiménez was born on January 14, 1989, and is a striker for Oriente Petrolero where he has played since 2006. So far he has made 130 game appearances for the club and has scored 36 times. He was with the youth football system of Tahuichi Academy. Peña was capped for the Bolivian under-20 team in 2009 and has played for the senior side of the Bolivian national football squad from 2010 onwards. Peña is in the Bolivian team’s lineup for the 2011 Copa America.
Diego Aroldo Cabrera Flores, also from Santa Cruz de la Sierra was born on August 13, 1982, and is currently a striker for the Colombian team Deportes Tolima. He was with the youth football system of Oriente Petrolero for one season before senior career debuted in 1998 with the same club. Cabrera had stints with Blooming, The Strongest, Cerro Porteño, Bolivar, Aurora, Cucuta Deportivo, Independiente Medelin, and Deportivo Pasto fro 11 seasons before joining Deported Tolima. Cabrera was in Bolivia’s under-20 squad starting 2001, and had been capped for the senior Bolivian national football team from 2005 onwards, with a total of 18 caps and one goal.
Marcelo Moreno Martins
Marcelo Moreno Martins, from Santa Cruz de la Sierra was born on June 18, 1987 and currently plays as a striker on loan with Wigan Athletic. He was with the youth football systems of Oriente Petrolero and Vitoria for one season each and made his debut to the senior side of Vitoria in 2005. After two seasons with the club he had a stint with Cruzeiro prior to signing with Ukrainian club Shakhtar Donetsk. After a season he was sent on loan to Werder Bremen and Wigan Athletic, spending a season with each club.. Known both as Marcelo Moreno and Marcelo Martins, he was first capped for the Bolivian national soccer squad in 2007 in a qualifying game against Venezuela for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Ricardo Pedriel Suarez was born on January 19, 1987. He is also a native of Santa Cruz de la Sierra. He currently plays as a striker for Turkish football club Sivasspor where he signed up in 2010. Suarez debuted with Wilstermann in 2006, and also played two seasons with Steaua Bucuresti and was on loan to Giresunspor club in Turkey for the 2009-2010 season. Pedriel joined the Bolivian under-20 squad in 2007 and the senior squad of Bolivia’s national football team from 2008 onwards. He has scored two goals for the team so far.
Gilbert Alvarez was born on April 7, 1992 in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. He was a product of the youth football systems of four clubs, Club Destroyers, San Martin, Tahuichi Academy and Club Callejas. He then debuted in the senior side of Club Callejas in 2009, spending one season with the club before he transferred to Cruzeiro in 2010, where he currently plays as a forward. Alvarez was called up for the Bolivian under-17 squad in 2009, and was likewise capped for the senior Bolivian national soccer team that same year. He was, however, not capped for the 2011 Copa America series. He was invited in June 2010 by the manager of the Bolton Wanderers to join the club in their pre-season training that was held in the United States.