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Talented forward Bernard joined Everton in August 2018 after five years with Ukranian team Shakhtar Donetsk where he won three league championships.
He featured in all but four of the Blues’ Premier League matches in 2018-19 and regularly thrilled Evertonians with his dazzling close control, penetrative forward surges and deft, incisive touches.
Bernard’s influence grew as the season progressed, with his value underlined by the fact he started Everton’s final 10 top-flight matches of the season. That run of games included conclusive victories over Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United as the Toffees delivered a strong finish to the campaign.
The 14-cap Brazil international won South America’s most prestigious trophy, the Copa Libertadores, with Atletico Mineiro before leaving for Shakhtar in summer 2013.
Bernard was named the Brazilian league’s best newcomer in 2012 after flourishing in a forward line featuring superstar former Barcelona attacker Ronaldinho.
He had a regular diet of Champions League football during his time in Ukraine and was an important figure in Shakhtar’s run to the knockout stages in 2017-18. Bernard scored three times, including in a pivotal group-stage victory over Manchester City, before his side was squeezed out by Roma on away goals in the last-16.
The 26-year-old, who is equally comfortable playing on either wing or operating as an advanced midfielder, joined Atletico Mineiro aged 14 following nine years playing for Comercial Esporte Clube Barreiro, a team in his home city of Belo Horizonte.
He twice fought back from being released by Serie A Atletico to secure a professional contract and was loaned to the club’s feeder team Democrata in 2010.
Bernard made 16 appearances and scored 14 goals to win a recall to Atletico and a senior debut in March 2011. The two-footed attacker returned to the youth team late in the campaign to score the decisive goal against Fluminense in the Belo Horizonte championship final.
The following campaign would see Bernard cement himself as an integral member of Atletico’s first team. Inspired by the club’s capture of national hero Ronaldinho, the gifted playmaker scored 11 goals and provided 12 assists to be crowned his country’s brightest new talent – and help his side clinch second place in the top flight, 12 months after finishing 15th.
Bernard made his Brazil debut against arch-foes Argentina in Buenos Aires in November 2012 and started his first match the following year in a 6-0 rout of Australia.
He held off from making a move to Europe until Atletico won the Copa Libertadores – South America’s Champions League equivalent.
Bernard scored in the semi-final as Atletico recovered a two-goal second-leg deficit to beat Argentines Newell’s Old Boys on penalties. And he set up a late equaliser in the final against Olimpia of Paraguay as Atletico won in an identical manner to their last-four victory.
Shakhtar paid £21.5million to beat off a host of rival suitors to sign Bernard in summer 2013 and he ended his first season in Europe celebrating a league title success.
Bernard was a member of the Brazil squad which reached the semi-finals of its home World Cup in 2014. He progressed to the same stage of the Europa League with Shakhtar in 2015-16, when he also picked up a Ukranian Cup winners’ medal.
The industrious South American was one of the leading lights in Ukranian football in each of his final two seasons with the club, as Shakhtar swept all before them to complete successive domestic league and cup doubles.