Jorge Costa

For other people named Jorge Costa, see Jorge Costa (disambiguation).
This name uses Portuguese naming customs. The first or maternal family name is Costa and the second or paternal family name is Almeida.
Jorge Costa
Personal information
Full name Jorge Paulo Costa Almeida
Date of birth (1971-10-14) 14 October 1971
Place of birth Porto, Portugal
Height 1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)
Playing position Centre back
Youth career
1983–1984 FC Foz
1984–1990 Porto
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1990–2005 Porto 263 (15)
1990–1991Penafiel (loan) 19 (3)
1991–1992Marítimo (loan) 31 (1)
2001–2002Charlton Athletic (loan) 24 (0)
2005–2006 Standard Liège 20 (2)
Total 357 (21)
National team
1991 Portugal U20 10 (1)
1992–1994 Portugal U21 22 (2)
1995–2002 Portugal 50 (2)
Teams managed
2006–2007 Braga (assistant)
2007 Braga
2008–2010 Olhanense
2010 Académica
2011–2012 CFR Cluj
2012–2013 AEL Limassol
2013–2014 Anorthosis
2014 Paços Ferreira
2014–2016 Gabon

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Jorge Paulo Costa Almeida (born 14 October 1971), known as Costa, is a retired Portuguese footballer who played as a central defender.

Nicknamed Bicho (animal) and Tanque (tank[1]) by his colleagues and fans for his aggressive and physical playing style, he played most of his professional career with Porto, being team captain for several seasons and winning a total of 24 major titles, notably eight national championships and the 2004 UEFA Champions League.

Having gained 50 caps for Portugal, Costa represented the nation at one World Cup and one European Championship. After retiring, he worked as a manager for several clubs.

Club career

Born in Porto, Costa made his professional debuts with F.C. Penafiel, on loan from hometown's FC Porto. The following season he was also loaned, to fellow top flight club C.S. Marítimo, playing 31 games including a controversial one in the Estádio das Antas where he scored an own goal; despite it being clearly unintentional the accusations of scoring for his team continued, forcing Porto's president Jorge Nuno Pinto da Costa to forbid further loaned players to play against Porto, a decision that stood for several decades.

In the 1992–93 campaign, Costa finally joined FC Porto, slowly making his way. Five seasons later he switched to jersey No. 2, previously worn by João Domingos Pinto, also being named team captain as the veteran retired. His career three only met four black spots: two serious knee injuries (during 1995–96, which ruled him out of UEFA Euro 1996 and during 1997's pre-season in Sweden) and a feud with coach Octávio Machado early in 2001–02, which forced him into "exile" at Charlton Athletic.[2] However, the image of Costa as the captain went untouched, and Porto fans turned against Machado with massive criticism of his team management and coaching, eventually forcing him outside the club.

Additionally, in 1996–97's UEFA Champions League, Costa was involved in an incident with A.C. Milan's George Weah on 20 November 1996, with the Liberian breaking his nose, alleging that he had been racially abused.[3] Costa strenuously denied the accusations of racism and was not charged by UEFA as no witnesses could verify Weah's allegations, not even his Milan teammates. Weah, on the other hand, was suspended for six matches, and later attempted to apologise to Costa but this was rebuffed by the Portuguese, who considered the charges of racist insults levelled against him to be defamatory and took the Liberian to court;[4] the incident resulted in the latter being sidelined for three weeks, also having to undergo facial surgery.

With José Mourinho in charge, Costa returned to Porto next season, and was unanimously chosen as captain of a side that went on to win a championship-cup-UEFA Cup treble, making him the third Porto captain in a row to lift cups at international level (following Pinto and Fernando Gomes). The player's winning streak continued as the next season he lifted the Champions League and the Intercontinental Cup.

In January 2006, after having been deemed surplus to requirements by new coach Co Adriaanse, Costa signed for Standard Liège from Belgium, reuniting with former Porto teammate Sérgio Conceição,[5] and helped his new side to a runner-up finish in the league. He decided to retire from the game in June after alleging personal reasons, despite having a running contract until 2007.

In the 2006–07 season, Costa began his coaching career with S.C. Braga, first as assistant to Rogério Gonçalves, whom he replaced in February 2007. In his first season he led the Minho side to the fourth place and the semifinals of the domestic cup, also reaching the round-of-16 in the UEFA Cup, being ousted by Tottenham Hotspur 4–6 on aggregate.

After again guiding Braga to the UEFA Cup group stage, Costa was fired midway through his second year.[6] He then moved to second level's S.C. Olhanense in the following campaign, eventually finishing the season as champions and returning the Algarve team to the first division after 34 years.[7] After helping Olhanense to the 13th position in the following campaign – thus safe from relegation – he left the club, joining another top division club, Académica de Coimbra.

On 21 December 2010, Costa announced his departure from Académica and his retirement from coaching, citing personal reasons.[8] The team was placed in ninth position after the 14th round, eventually narrowly escaping relegation. In May 2011, however, he announced his comeback, signing a contract with Romania's CFR Cluj.[9]

On 24 October 2012, AEL Limassol FC appointed Costa as their new manager, on the eve of a Europa League group stage tie against Fenerbahçe SK.[10] In the following summer he moved teams but stayed in Cyprus, penning a 1+1 deal with Anorthosis Famagusta FC.[11]

From 2014 until November 2016, Costa coached the Gabon national team, being ousted from the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations group stage after one win and two losses.[12]

International career

With Portugal, Costa and Fernando Couto were considered the best defensive duo in UEFA Euro 2000. The former retired from international football after the 2002 FIFA World Cup, having gained fifty caps; in the latter competition he scored an own goal as the national side lost 2–3 to the United States,[13] eventually exiting in the group stage.

Previously, in 1991, Costa was an undisputed starter as the Portuguese team won the FIFA U-20 World Cup.[14][15]

Jorge Costa: International goals
Goal Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 15 November 2000 Estádio Primeiro de Maio, Braga, Portugal  Israel 2–0 2–1 Friendly
2 13 February 2002 Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys, Barcelona, Spain  Spain 0–1 1–1 Friendly

Club statistics

Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Portugal League Taça de Portugal Taça da Liga Europe Total
1990–91PenafielPrimeira Liga233
1991–92MarítimoPrimeira Liga311
1992–93PortoPrimeira Liga8161142
England League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
2001–02CharltonPremier League24000240
Portugal League Taça de Portugal Taça da Liga Europe Total
2002–03PortoPrimeira Liga26231120413
Belgium League Belgian Cup League Cup Europe Total
2005–06Standard LiègeBelgian Pro League13000130
Total Portugal 3052028291442426
England 24000240
Belgium 13000130
Career total 3422028291446126











  1. Euro 2000 profile; BBC Sport
  2. Charlton complete Costa move; BBC Sport, 18 April 2002
  3. Match report; at RSSSF
  4. "Court postpones Weah trial". BBC Sport. 28 February 2001. Archived from the original on 2 April 2003. Retrieved 22 September 2011.
  5. Jorge Costa to help Standard fly;, 12 December 2005
  6. Liga lethargy costs Jorge Costa;, 30 October 2007
  7. "Olhanense campeão" [Olhanense champion] (in Portuguese). LPFP. Retrieved 18 May 2009.
  8. "Futebol: Jorge Costa acaba carreira desportiva de forma surpreendente e misteriosa" [Football: Jorge Costa ends career in surprising and mysterious fashion] (in Portuguese). Multi Desportos. 23 December 2010. Retrieved 12 March 2012.
  9. "Jorge Costa confirmado no Cluj" [Jorge Costa confirmed at Cluj] (in Portuguese). Relvado. 19 May 2011. Retrieved 12 March 2012.
  10. Ο Ζόρζε Κόστα νέος προπονητής [Jorge Costa the new coach] (in Greek). AEL Limassol. 24 October 2012. Retrieved 26 November 2012.
  11. ΤΑ ΗΝΙΑ ΣΤΟΝ ΖΟΡΖΕ ΚΟΣΤΑ [Jorge Costa takes the reins] (in Greek). Anorthosis FC. 17 August 2013. Retrieved 17 August 2013.
  12. "Gabon preps in disarray as coach leaves". BBC Sport. 4 November 2016. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  13. USA stun Portugal; BBC Sport, 5 June 2002
  14. Jorge CostaFIFA competition record
  15. "Geração de ouro faz 20 anos" [Golden generation celebrates 20th birthday] (in Portuguese). Diário de Notícias. 20 August 2011. Retrieved 3 August 2016.
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