Zeca (footballer)

This name uses Portuguese naming customs. The first or maternal family name is Gonçalves and the second or paternal family name is Rodrigues.

Zeca in action with Panathinaikos in 2011
Personal information
Full name José Carlos Gonçalves Rodrigues
Date of birth (1988-08-31) 31 August 1988
Place of birth Lisbon, Portugal
Height 1.82 m (5 ft 11 12 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Number 10
Youth career
1998–2007 Casa Pia
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2007–2010 Casa Pia 46 (5)
2010–2011 Vitória Setúbal 26 (0)
2011– Panathinaikos 146 (8)
National team
2011 Portugal U23 1 (0)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 6 November 2016.

José Carlos Gonçalves Rodrigues (born 31 August 1988), commonly known as Zeca, is a Portuguese professional footballer who plays for Greek club Panathinaikos FC mainly as a midfielder but also as a right back.[1]

Club career


Born in Lisbon, Zeca started his career with local Casa Pia AC, joining joined the club's youth system at the age of 10 and promoting to the fourth division in his first season as a senior. In the 2010 summer he moved straight into the Primeira Liga, signing with Vitória de Setúbal.[2]

During his first and only season with the Sado River team, Zeca made 26 league appearances, appearing in as many games as a starter or a substitute and totalling 1,611 minutes of action.[3]


On 29 July 2011, Zeca signed a four-year contract with Greek giants Panathinaikos FC for a fee of 400,000,[4][5] as the club was coached by countryman Jesualdo Ferreira.[6] He played all 30 league games in 2012–13, but Pana could only finish in sixth place. After a massive rebuilding for the following campaign, he was one of the few survivors.[7]

On 26 April 2014, after more than 100 appearances with the club, Zeca lifted the Greek Cup as team captain, in a final against PAOK FC at the Olympic stadium in Athens.[8] On 21 June, he signed a three-year contract extension.[9][10]

In February 2015, Zeca expressed his desire to play for the Greek national team if he was awarded the country's citizenship.[11] He agreed to renew his contract until 2018 two months later, commenting on the deal: "It will be good to continue with Anastasiou in charge. ... The team is happy and I think we can do a lot better under him".[12]

On 6 February 2016, Andrea Stramaccioni's team ended the match with ten players, as Zeca was shown a straight red card at a 0–1 home loss against Skoda Xanthi FC.[13] Eight days later, after returning from suspension, he again received his marching orders, but in an eventual 3–0 win at PAS Giannina FC.[14]

On 9 August 2016, Zeca extended his link until the summer of 2019 for an undisclosed fee.[15]

Club statistics

As of 6 November 2016[16]
Club Season League Cup Europe* Other** Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Vitória Setúbal 2010–11 260310020311
Total 260310020311
Panathinaikos 2011–12 272202050362
2012–13 30420101--425
2013–14 270800060410
2014–15 292208050442
2015–16 270404060410
2016–17 60006000120
Total 14681803012202169
Career total 172821130124024710

(* Includes UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League)

(** Includes Taça da Liga and Greek Playoffs)




  1. Παναθηναϊκός: Ζέκα σημαίνει… αρχηγός (videos+photos) (in Greek). Onsports. 21 July 2014. Retrieved 9 March 2015.
  2. Η αναζήτηση για τον αντί-Λάζαρο [The seek for anti-Lazaros] (in Greek). Kitzbühel: In.gr. 17 July 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2012.
  3. "Επίσημη πρόταση ΠΑΟ για Ζεκά", γράφουν οι Πορτογάλοι ["Official offer of PAO for Zeca", the Portuguese say] (in Greek). Athens: In.gr. 22 July 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2012.
  4. Ο Ζεκά υπέγραψε για 4 χρόνια [Zeca signed for 4 years] (in Greek). Athens: In.gr. 29 July 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2012.
  5. Με συγκρατημένη αισιοδοξία ο Παναθηναϊκός "πάτησε" Δανία [Optimistic Panathinaikos "stepped" on Denmark] (in Greek). Athens: In.gr. 26 July 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2012.
  6. "Panathinaikos sign Zeca, Jesualdo Ferreira swoops for Vitoria de Setubal midfielder". PortuGOAL. 26 July 2011. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
  7. Παναθηναϊκός: Η 100άρα του Ζέκα [Panathinaikos: Zeca's 100] (in Greek). Onsports. 29 January 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
  8. "Berg treble helps Panathinaikos win Greek Cup". Reuters. 26 April 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
  9. Ανανέωσε ο Ζέκα (in Greek). Contra. 21 June 2014. Retrieved 21 June 2014.
  10. Παναθηναϊκός: Ανανέωσε ο Ζέκα! [Panathinaikos: Zeca renews!] (in Greek). Onsports. 21 June 2014. Retrieved 21 June 2014.
  11. Zeca open for Greece call up. SDNA. 24 February 2015. Retrieved 14 July 2015.
  12. "Zeca hails Anastasiou". SDNA. 4 April 2015. Retrieved 4 April 2015.
  13. "SKODA Xanthi stun Panathinaikos (vid)". SDNA. 6 February 2016. Retrieved 14 February 2016.
  14. "10-man Panathinaikos leave Giannina victorious (vids)". SDNA. 14 February 2016. Retrieved 14 February 2016.
  15. "Στον Παναθηναϊκό μέχρι το 2019 ο Ζέκα" [Zeca with Panathinaikos until 2019] (in Greek). Sport 24. 9 August 2016. Retrieved 9 August 2016.
  16. "Zeca". Soccerway. Retrieved 25 April 2014.
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