Written by Timothy Nyangacha
Co-captain of the Paraguay national football team, 36 year old defender Paulo Da Silva is expected to be an impact player for his nation at this year’s Copa America. The footballer, born in Asunción, Paraguay, has made the most appearances ever for the Paraguay national team (133) . Bringing experience and veteran savvy, Da Silva will be tasked with leading a relatively inexperienced defense and Paraguay squad that was runners-up in the 2011 Copa America as well as fourth place finishers in the 2015 Copa America . Paraguay is currently ranked 39th according to the FIFA World Ranking.
Da Silva has spent much of his club career (2003-2009, 2013- ) playing for the Mexican squad Toluca in the Liga MX . Between his two stints with the club, he played two seasons with the English club Sunderland (2009-2011), two seasons with the Spanish club Real Zaragoza (2010-2012), and one season with the Mexican club Pachuca (2012-2013) . This season, he has made 34 appearances for Toluca and has scored 2 goals as of 04/30/2016 .
At the age of 14, Da Silva was called up to play for Paraguay’s Under-17 squad in 1994 . Since then, he has participated in the 2006 and 2010 World Cups as well as the 2007, 2011, and 2015 Copa America tournaments .
For Paraguay to advance deep into this year’s Copa America Centenario, Da Silva will likely need to be the defense’s anchor and perform at a high level.
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