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Teams in Sao Paulo

Brazilians utterly adore football, which has led to a football club being on almost every street corner. It can be impossible to keep track of which clubs come from which cities, especially when so many teams can reside in a single area.

We’ve made it easy for you to stay on top of which team comes from where. As we guide you through the clubs of Sao Paulo

1. São Paulo FC

Founded in 1930, São Paulo FC is one of Brazil’s most successful football clubs.  With many accolades to their name, the side has enjoyed great spells of success but probably enjoyed their best spell in the 90s.

Between 1991-1996 they won two state championships, The National Championship (Campeonato Brasileiro Série A), two Copa Libertadores (The South American Champions League), a Copa CONMEBOL and two intercontinental cups (The Club World Cup’s predecessor).

They were the first Brazillian club to win back-to-back Copa Libertadores trophies.

They won everything there is to win in these 5 years, thanks to the likes of Cafu, Rogerio Ceni, Juninho Paulista, Muller and many more now iconic São Paulo players.

Then in 2005, they’d win the Club World Championships, earning the nickname of Campeão de Tudo (Champions of Everything)

The side has always had a strong academy system, producing future Ballon d’Or winner Kaka, and the club can boast that all five of Brazil’s World Cup-winning squads have contained a Sao Paulo FC player.

They play their matches at the Estádio do Morumbi which boasts a capacity of 66,795.

After their 2024 Supercopa Do Brasil win, they became the first team in Brazil to win all available trophies.

Nicknames: Tricolor Paulista, O Clube da Fé (The Faith Team), Campeão de Tudo (Champions of Everything), Soberano (Sovereign) 

2. Corinthians

Corinthians, founded in 1910, is another big football club based in São Paulo. With a massive fanbase known as the “Fiel,” Corinthians has enjoyed considerable success over the years.

Most of their significant Silverware has come in the 21st century, the side enjoying a purple patch of success that started in 1998 with back-to-back Campeonato Brasileiro Série A titles, before going on to win the inaugural Club World Cup in 2000.

They won 4 of their 7 Serie A titles between 2005 and 2017, the first coming in 1990, and hold 30 state championships

In 2012, they won the only piece of major silverware they were missing, winning the Copa Libertadores, which qualified them for the Club World Championships, which they subsequently won, making them Brazil’s only two-time winners.

Despite their massive success in the 21st Century, they endured relegation just 2 years after winning the first-division title. Upon their promotion back to the top flight, in 2009, they signed the legendary Ronaldo, who scored 29 in 52 games to help them back to becoming a title-challenging side. 

Corinthians’ home ground is the Neo Química Arena or the Arena Corinthians, a modern stadium located in the Itaquera district of São Paulo, holding 47,252 people.

Nicknames: Timão (The Great Team), Time do Povo (The People’s Team), Todo Poderoso (Almighty), Coringão

3. Palmeiras

Palmeiras, founded in 1914, is the 2nd oldest football club in São Paulo. The team has a storied history enjoying great success in the late ’60s to early 70s and the early ’90s, but are currently experiencing the most successful period in their history.

They have won 12 Campeonato Brasileiros, their last two coming consecutively in 2022 and 2023, and recently became the second Brazillian team to win back to back to back Copa Libertadores titles, the two triumphs coming in 2020 and 2021.

Palmeiras is known for its passionate fanbase and intense rivalries, particularly with Corinthians, with matches between the two often considered the biggest derby in Brazil. 

The club plays its home matches at the Allianz Parque, a 43,713 seater, state-of-the-art stadium in the Palmeiras district of São Paulo.

Nicknames: Verdão (Big Green), Periquito (Plain parakeet, used in the club’s early stages), Porco (Pig, adopted in 1986), Palestra Itália (Palmeiras old name), Alviverde (Green and White), Academia de Futebol (Football Academy)

4. Santos FC

Santos FC, founded in 1912, is famous for being the club where Pelé, one of the greatest footballers of all time, spent most of his career.

Santos has hosted some of Brazil’s greatest players and is well known for producing some of the greatest players to grace the game.

While you may think of them as producing their best talents in the 50s, 60s and 70s, they have been a veritable talent factory their entire existence, producing some of the 21st century’s most exciting players including, Robinho, Neymar, and most recently Rodrygo.

The team has a rich history of success, having won 22 Paulistas, 8 Campeonato Brasileiro titles and 3 Copa Libertadores championships. 

Santos FC is known for its attacking style of play and has produced many talented players over the years. The club’s home matches are played at the 16,068 seater Vila Belmiro Stadium.

Despite their giant stature within the game, Santos were recently relegated to the second tier and must rebuild from the ground up to recapture the success they once enjoyed. The club have struggled since 2016, which marked their last major piece of silverware.

Nicknames: Peixe (Fish), Alvinegro (Black-and-white), Alvinegro Praiano (Black-and-white from the Beach), Santástico (Santastic)

5. São Caetano

São Caetano, although tiny in comparison to the previous 4 clubs holds a special place in the hearts of many, thanks to an incredible rise to prominence at the turn of the millennium, despite having only been founded 11 years earlier.

Founded in 1989, the club were promoted to the top division after following an unusually formatted Brazillian national championships, which meant  São Caetano had a top-flight title chance, despite playing in the second tier of Brazil. They finished runner-up, losing a final that would have made them Brazilian champions. 

But unlike most fairytale stories, Caetano remained at the top of their game, qualifying for the 2002 Copa Libertadores.

Not only would their qualification prove an incredible story, but in unbelievable fashion, they battled all the way to the final, but fell at the final hurdle. They suffered defeat in a penalty shootout at the hands of the Paraguayan Olimpia.

But, just as the club were cementing themselves as a real force, they would mark their own downfall through truly terrible circumstances. After letting defender Serginho play despite the medical team being aware of the defender’s heart problems, he suffered a fatal heart attack on the pitch.

As a result of this negligence, the club were docked 24 points, suffering relegation, and have been unable to regain their momentum, and currently languish in the 4th tier of Brazillian football.

Nicknames: Azulão (Ultramarine grosbeak)

6. Red Bull Bragantino

Red Bull Bragantino, formerly known as Clube Atlético Bragantino, was bought by Red Bull in 2019 but was originally founded in 1928.

 Before their Red Bull takeover, the club lacked the pedigree of its Sao Paulo counterparts, holding a single State championship to its name, winning it in 1990.

Since the Red Bull investment, the club have rapidly ascended, reaching the final of the Suda Americana in 2021, but could only finish runners-up.

Before the takeover, Bragantino had been a middling second-tier side but has now cemented itself as a competitive  Série A side that has qualified for continental competition twice in 4 years.

Red Bull Bragantino’s home matches are played at the 17,724 Nabi Abi Chedid Stadium, located in the city of Bragança Paulista, in the São Paulo state.

Nicknames: RB Bragantino, Massa Bruta (Brute Mass), Braga, Braga boys

7. São Bernardo FC

A recently founded club São Bernardo FC was only created in 2004 and has already established itself as a solid 3rd tier side.

Based in the city of São Bernardo do Campo, in the São Paulo metropolitan area, the sides’ most recent campaign saw them finish 7th, as they continue to strive ever closer to top-flight football.

São Bernardo FC’s home matches are played at the 12,578 seater 1º de Maio Stadium, named after the International Workers’ Day.

Nicknames: Bernô, Tigre do ABC (Tiger of the ABC Region), Aurinegro Batateiro (Gold & Black Potato Farmer)

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