Marta (footballer)

Marta Vieira da Silva 2013.jpg
Personal information
Full nameMarta Vieira da Silva
Date of birth (1986-02-19) 19 February 1986 (age 33)
Place of birthDois Riachos, Alagoas, Brazil
Height1.62 m (5 ft 4 in)[1]
Playing positionForward
Club information
Current team
Orlando Pride
Youth career
Senior career*
2000–2002Vasco da Gama16(4)
2002–2004Santa Cruz38(16)
2004–2008Umeå IK103(111)
2009Los Angeles Sol19(10)
2009–2010Santos (loan)14(26)
2010FC Gold Pride24(19)
2011Western New York Flash14(10)
2012–2014Tyresö FF38(27)
2014–2017FC Rosengård43(23)
2017–Orlando Pride53(22)
National team
2002Brazil U-19
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 25 August 2019
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 23 June 2019

Marta Vieira da Silva (born 19 February 1986), commonly known as Marta ([ˈmaɾtɐ]), is a Swedish-Brazilian footballer who plays for the Orlando Pride in the National Women's Soccer League and the Brazil national team as a forward. With 17 goals, she holds the record for most goals scored at FIFA World Cup tournaments.[2] Moreover, she is the first footballer of either gender to score at five World Cup editions,[3] followed by Christine Sinclair.

Marta is often regarded as the best female player of all time and was given the nickname "Pelé in skirts" by Pelé himself.[4][5][6] She has been named FIFA World Player of the Year six times, five of them being consecutive (from 2006 through 2010) and the latest award coming in 2018. She was a member of the Brazilian national teams that won the silver medal at the 2004 and 2008 Summer Olympics. She was also awarded the Golden Ball (MVP) at the 2004 FIFA U-19 Women's World Championship, and won both the Golden Ball award as the best player and the Golden Boot award as the top scorer in the 2007 Women's World Cup after leading Brazil to the final of the tournament.

In January 2013 she was named as one of the six Ambassadors of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, alongside Amarildo, Bebeto, Carlos Alberto Torres, Ronaldo and Mario Zagallo.[7] She also appeared in the Sveriges Television television documentary series The Other Sport from 2013.

In August 2016, Marta was one of the 8 to carry the Olympic Flag in the Olympic Games in Rio.

Club career

Career start

Marta was discovered by well-known Brazilian female coach Helena Pacheco when she was only 14 years old. After playing for the CSA youth team, Marta started her professional career at Vasco da Gama in 2000. After two years, she was transferred to Santa Cruz, a small club in the state of Minas Gerais,[8] where she would play for two more seasons, before defending Umeå IK of Sweden.

Umeå IK

Marta joined Umeå IK prior to the 2004 season during which Umeå reached the final of the UEFA Cup, winning 8–0 on aggregate against Frankfurt with Marta scoring three goals over the two-legs. In the league, despite amassing a total of 106 goals, which was 32 more than the Champions, Umeå finished second, beaten by a single point by Djurgården. Marta scored 22 league goals, and also got on the scoresheet at the cup final against Djurgården, scoring the only goal in a 2–1 Umeå loss.

Her second season (2005) ended with Marta scoring 21 goals and with Umeå winning the league, having gone undefeated. Once again, Umeå were beaten by Djurgården in the cup losing by a score of 3–1 in the final; thus avenging a 7–0 league defeat to Umeå some three weeks earlier.

In 2006, Umeå once again won the league without losing, and Marta, as in the previous year, was the league's top scorer with 21 goals. Umeå cruised to an 11–1 aggregate win over Norwegian side Kolbotn FK in the UEFA Women's Cup, with Marta scoring twice in both matches. For the third time in a row, she was on the losing side in the Swedish cup final when her side were defeated 3–2 by Linköpings FC.

Marta in the 2009 WPS All-Stars match against Umeå IK.

The 2007 season was a relatively successful for Umeå with the club winning both the league, in which they finished nine points ahead of Djurgården,[9] and the Swedish Cup, beating AIK 4–3 in a match in which Marta scored a hat-trick, the last (winning) goal coming three minutes from time. Marta scored 25 goals in the league finishing one goal behind the top scorer Lotta Schelin.[10] In the UEFA Women's Cup they reached the final for the fourth time but suffered a disappointment, losing 1–0 on aggregate to Arsenal.

The 2008 season saw Umeå and Marta win another Swedish championship title. After the end of the season, speculation arose concerning the future of Marta and a couple of months later, on the day of the FIFA World Player of the Year Awards in January 2009, Marta announced that she would play for the American side Los Angeles Sol for the next three years.[11] At the request of Marta, the Los Angeles side also purchased Johanna Frisk from Umeå IK,[12] which led to a report by Swedish TV4 sports presenter Patrick Ekwall that Marta and Frisk were a lesbian couple.[13] Both players denied this to be true.[14]

Marta's life and football prowess was depicted in the 2005 Swedish Television documentary "Marta – Pelés kusin" ("Marta – Pelé's cousin").

Los Angeles Sol

On the day she was named FIFA World Player of the Year in January 2009, Marta announced that she would be joining Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) team Los Angeles Sol for the league's inaugural season on a three-year contract.[15][16] Of her signing, she said, "For me the most important thing is to be in a place where the best players in the world are playing and this is what they are trying to do here. The American League is being considered one of the best in the world, so I had to come now."[17]

Marta was the league's top scorer for the 2009 season with ten goals and three assists.[18] The Sol were regular season champions and reached the WPS Championship Final, where it lost 1–0 to Sky Blue FC.[19]


During the off-season with Los Angeles Sol, she signed a three-month loan contract with Santos to play in the Copa Libertadores and in the Copa do Brasil,[20][21] helping her club win both competitions, and scoring a goal in the Libertadores final and two in the Copa do Brasil final.[22][23]

FC Gold Pride

Marta at 2010 WPS Championship

In January 2010, the Sol ceased operations[24] and the rights to Marta and her teammates were made available in the 2010 WPS Dispersal Draft. The rights to Marta were acquired by the FC Gold Pride as their first pick.[25] She appeared in all of the Pride's 24 games and scored 19 goals, earning her the WPS MVP and WPS Golden Boot for the second year in a row.

Marta also appeared in the WPS All-Star 2010, where she captained one of the teams as the top international vote-getter. She led the Gold Pride to the regular season championship and had two assists and a goal in the WPS Championship against the Philadelphia Independence, earning MVP honors.[26] She became a free agent after the Gold Pride folded on 17 November 2010.

Return to Santos

On 16 December 2010, Santos presented again Marta . It was a two-month contract that could become a link of a year, but it did not. The board of directors has confirmed it is finalizing negotiations for the club to dispute the women's football league in the United States in 2011. However, pursuant to the competition regulation, the club would have only five Brazilian players – Marta and four.

Western New York Flash

On 25 January 2011, Marta joined her third WPS team in three years, the expansion team Western New York Flash, who took over the third year of her contract with the Gold Pride.[27] Marta's 2 goals and 4 assists were a key part to the 3–0–1 start for the team's 2011 season.

Western New York Flash forward Marta helped her team to the Regular Season Championship title, scoring her tenth goal of the season in a 2–0 victory over the Atlanta Beat on Sunday, en route to earning her third consecutive PUMA Golden Boot award. The Brazilian soccer star edged out fellow Flash forward Christine Sinclair, in the tie breaker having a greater production rate based on goals per game average.[28]

Tyresö FF

Marta interviewed by Anna Brolin of TV4 in 2013

As WPS cancelled the 2012 season, Marta decided to return to Damallsvenskan in Sweden. On 22 February 2012 she signed a two-year contract with Tyresö FF.[29] Her extraordinary salary of about $400,000[30][31] per season was paid by external sponsors and not the club, its owners stated.[32] Tyresö won the Damallsvenskan title for the first time in the 2012 season and Marta collected her fifth league winner's medal.[33]

Marta scored twice in Tyresö's 4–3 defeat by Wolfsburg in the 2014 UEFA Women's Champions League Final.[34] Tyresö had suffered a financial implosion in 2014 and withdrew from the 2014 Damallsvenskan season, expunging all their results and making all their players free agents. The Stockholm County Administrative Board published the players' salaries, showing Marta was the highest earner at SEK 168 000 per month.[35]

As news of Tyresö's financial difficulties spread, Marta had been linked with a transfer to Avaldsnes IL. But the Norwegian Toppserien club's chairman warned that she would have to take a substantial pay cut.[36] Paris Saint-Germain Féminines were also reported to have approached Marta and Tyresö teammate Caroline Seger.[37]


In July 2014 she signed a six-month contract with defending champion FC Rosengård in Sweden.[38] While with the Swedish club, Marta won the Damallsvenskan league title in 2014 and 2015, the Svenska Cupen in 2016, and the Svenska Supercupen in 2015 and 2016.

Orlando Pride

After Rosengård lost to Barcelona in the quarterfinals of the UEFA Women's Champions League, Marta joined Orlando Pride on a free transfer from Rosengård, which agreed to terminate her contract. Her new contract with Orlando is for two years with the option for a third.[39] In her first season at Orlando, she finished second in the league in both goals and assists and was voted MVP by her teammates.[40] The Pride ended the season in third place earning their first ever play-off appearance where they lost in the semi-finals to the Portland Thorns.


Club Season League Cup Continental Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Los Angeles Sol 2009 WPS 20 10 - - - - 20 10
Santos FC 2009 Série A - - 7 18 6 7 13 25
FC Gold Pride 2010 WPS 25 20 - - - - 25 20
Santos FC 2011 Série A - - - - 4 2 4 2
Western New York Flash 2011 WPS 15 10 - - - - 15 10
Tyresö FF 2012 Damallsvenskan 21 12 4 4 - - 25 16
2013 15 12 1 1 8 7 24 20
2014 2 3 1 1 3 4
Total 38 27 6 6 8 7 52 40
FC Rosengård 2014 Damallsvenskan 9 5 5 2 6 4 20 11
2015 21 8 5 5 6 5 32 18
2016 19 13 4 0 6 0 29 13
Total 49 26 14 7 18 9 81 42
Orlando Pride 2017 NWSL 24 13 24 13
2018 17 4 17 4
2019 12 5 12 5
Total 53 22 0 0 0 0 53 22
Total 200 115 27 31 36 25 263 171
Other Languages
العربية: مارتا
azərbaycanca: Marta Vieyra da Silva
français: Marta (football)
हिन्दी: मार्टा
Bahasa Indonesia: Marta Vieira da Silva
Kreyòl ayisyen: Marta (foutbòl)
lietuvių: Marta
македонски: Марта (фудбалерка)
മലയാളം: മാർത്ത
Bahasa Melayu: Marta Vieira da Silva
Simple English: Marta (footballer)
slovenčina: Marta (futbalistka)
中文: 玛塔