Born in Lisbon, he played as an attacking midfielder for Sporting Lisbon, FC Barcelona, Real Madrid and Inter Milan, before retiring from football in May 2009. He played a record 127 times for Portugal. He was 2000 European Footballer of the Year and 2001 FIFA World Player of the Year. He is one of the few footballers to have played for both rival Spanish clubs Barcelona and Real Madrid. His 2000 transfer to Real was for a then world record fee of £37 million. He won the Champions League with real in 2002. A member of Club de Campo in Madrid, this is his second appearance in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.