In Brazil, poker has become more and more popular. The Brazilian Ministry of Sports calls it a mind sport, and events like the World Series of Poker Circuit Brazil and the Brazilian Series of Poker attract thousands of players every year. That’s why football legend Denilson de Oliveira, called Denilson by fans, tried out a new type of game. In March 2016, he signed with 888poker and Team888 as their first celebrity ambassador. Here’s some more information about this famous footballer and his new occupation.
Denilson’s Football Career
Denilson de Oliveira was born in Diadema, a small town near Sao Paulo, in 1977. He’s always been very proud of his culture and heritage, and he started playing football for a local club called Ouro Verde when he was just 11 years old. Denilson became a professional footballer six years later, at only 17, when he competed in the 1994 Copa CONMEBOL for the winning team, Sao Paulo. It’s one of the largest football clubs in Brazil.
Denílson was a left-footed player who played as a left winger. He was famous for his dribbling skills and his frequent use of feints to fool opponents. In 1998, he transferred teams to Real Betis for $32 million (£21.5 million), making him the most costly player in the world at the time.
In 2002, Denilson won the FIFA World Cup. He also achieved many other victories and awards from Copa America, the Brazilian League, and the Copa del Rey League in Spain. He played for many different teams, and he retired from football in 2010. After that, he became a commentator for a Brazilian sports television network.
During his time as a footballer, Denilson gained more than 60 caps for Brazil and participated in six international tournaments. He was sponsored by Nike, and he appeared with other popular footballers in a commercial for the 2002 World Cup that aired in Japan and Korea. Now, he enjoys spending time with his dogs, cheering for his favourite football team, Palmeiras, and playing poker for Team888.
888poker sponsors several recognised professionals, including Bruno Foster and Kara Scott. Bruno is Denilson’s coach, and Kara is a former host of the American Poker Awards. Soon after starting to play for 888poker, during an interview with USA Today, Denilson said, “All my friends started to play poker, and so I got more and more interested in the game. Many of the qualities you need to be a successful footballer can help you improve your poker game.”
“888poker is one of the biggest and best poker platforms in the world, so I am very proud to join the 888poker team. I hope it will help develop my own poker skills as well as encourage new players to get involved in this exciting game.” Denilson was the first nonprofessional 888poker player ambassador in Brazil, and he should participate in many successful games in the future. As in football, he strives to stay calm, think about strategy, and pay attention to his opponents.