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Ivo Pinto

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Norwich Career: 2016-19 (94 appearances, 3 goals) 
Current Club: Rio Ave (Portugal) (on loan from Dinamo Zagreb (Croatia))
Date of Birth: 7/1/1990 (Lourosa, Portugal) 
Nationality: Portuguese

Biography

After weeks of speculation, Portuguese right-back Ivo Pinto signed for Norwich City on 8th January 2016 from Dinamo Zagreb, for a fee reported to be £2.21m

Ivo Daniel Ferreira Mendonça Pinto is originally from the parish of Lourosa in northern Portugal, south of Porto. He developed as a youth player with top-flight sides Boavista and Porto but had to go out on loan to lower league teams (Gil Vicente, Vitoria Setubal, Coviha) to get game-time. The defender then signed permanently for another Primeira Liga club, Rio Ave, when his contract expired in 2011 but was immediately loaned to União Leiria.

Pinto finally started playing regularly, at the age of 21, but the team suffered relegation to the second tier at the end of the 2011/12 campaign.

That prompted a move to Romanian champions CFR Cluj – where several Portuguese players were already making names for themselves – bringing his first experience of the Champions League. He started all six of Cluj’s group games, beating Manchester United 1-0 at Old Trafford and Braga twice, as well as drawing 1-1 at Galatasaray. That meant narrowly missing out on qualification and dropping in to the Europa League, where they were knocked out by Inter Milan.

A move to Croatian champions Dinamo Zagreb followed in 2013, with Pinto reportedly signing a four-year deal after a fee of around €5million was agreed. He made more than 100 appearances for Zagreb and helped them win the Croatian league title in 2014 and 2015 as well as the Croatian Cup twice. Pinto has faced both Arsenal and Bayern Munich in the 2015-16 Champions League.

Pinto made his Norwich debut in the 5-4 home defeat to Liverpool on 23rd January 2016. He finished the season with eight appearances as Norwich were relegated to the Championship.

He has been capped by Portugal at Under-16 to Under-21 (6 caps)

Pinto scored his first ever professional goal when he scored Norwich's third in their 3-1 home win over Burton Albion on 24th September 2016.

Pinto finished the 2016/17 season having made 38 appearances. He made a further 41 the following season, scoring twice.

In january 2019, he was linked with a move to Turkish side MKE Ankaragücü with whom he linked up at their winter training camp. He had becoem second choice left-back following the emergence of Max Aarons. He finished the 2018/19 season with five appearances, taking his total to 94. His support to the younger players / defenders was credited as a factor in Norwich's Championship winning season in 2018/19. On 6th May 2019, it was announced that Pinto would leave Norwich at the end of the 2018/19 season and he was given a farewell as part of the Team Wes vs Team Russ testimonial on 6th May 2019.

On 10th May 2019 it was reported that Pinto had rejoined Dinamo signing a three year deal. He played just six games for Zagreb in the first half of the 2019/20 season, including two Champions League appearances against Saburtalo in the second qualifying round. On 8th January 2020 he joined high flying Portuguese side Famalicao on loan for the remainder of the season. The newly promoted side sat 3rd in the Portuguese top flight at the time of the transfer. Famalicao finished just outside the placings for the Europa League. On 31st August 2020 he rejoined Rio Ave, on loan, who did qualify for the Europa League.


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