The ageless wonder: Brazil’s Formiga going strong at 42


At 42, the Brazil midfielder Miraildes Maciel Mota affectionately known as Formiga is still going strong – 25 years after making her FIFA Women’s World Cup debut.

Formiga recently signed a one-year-old contract extension with Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) which sees her at the French club until June 30, 2021.

“Miraildes Maciel Mota, 42, is a legend in women’s football. The vice-captain of Paris Saint-Germain will play in 2020-2021 her 27th professional season,” said PSG in a statement.

The native of Salvador de Bahia has made 77 appearances across all competitions in the colours of PSG since arriving in January 2017, scoring 4 goals and winning the French Cup in 2018.

Formiga has been playing at the top level for 25 years and plans to end her phenomenal international trajectory after the rescheduled Tokyo Games in 2021.

The former Malmo FF and Chicago Red Stars player has represented Brazil at six Olympics and she is the only player to appear in seven World Cups.

“This season, thanks to her goal scored in the 16th leg of the Champions League on the grass of the Portuguese Braga (7-0), the midfielder has become, at 41 years and 193 days, the oldest player history to score a goal in European competition,” – PSG.


The Brazil veteran midfielder was nicknamed Formiga, Portuguese word for ant by her teammates on the streets of Salvador simply because of her unselfish play.

Formiga made her World Cup debut in 1995 as a 17-year-old, when Brazil beat Norway in the third-place play-off.

“In 2015, at the World Cup in Canada, Formiga also became, at 37 years, 3 months and 6 days the oldest player to score a goal in the final phase of the World Cup.”

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By Tokelo Martin Mokhesi 

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