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Rolando Zárate

Rolando Zárate
Personal information
Full nameRolando David Zárate Riga
Date of birth (1978-08-06) 6 August 1978 (age 35)
Place of birthHaedo, Argentina
Height1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing positionCentre forward
Youth career
Vélez Sársfield
Senior career*
1997–2006Vélez Sársfield102(44)
1998Terrassa (loan)2(0)
1999–2000Real Madrid B (loan)33(21)
1999–2000Real Madrid (loan)6(1)
2001Murcia (loan)21(6)
2001–2002Ciudad Murcia (loan)34(12)
2002–2003Livingston (loan)33(9)
2004Ittihad FC (loan)1(0)
2006UANL Tigres7(0)
2007River Plate7(1)
2008Barcelona SC23(5)
2009–2010Vélez Sársfield27(5)
2011–2012Defensa y Justicia5(1)
National team
Template:Infobox medal templates
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).
This name uses Spanish naming customs; the first or paternal family name is Zárate and the second or maternal family name is Riga.

Rolando David Zárate Riga (born 6 August 1978) is an Argentine retired footballer who played as a centre forward.

Club career

Born in Haedo, Buenos Aires Province, Zárate played most of his career for Club Atlético Vélez Sársfield, representing the club in two different spells. He made his professional debuts in 1997, playing in only 17 top division games in his first two seasons combined.

In 1998 Zárate moved to Spain, going on to remain in that country for the following four years, always on loan: he started out at Terrassa FC in the third level, joining Real Madrid Castilla in the same category the following year. His impressive scoring form prompted Real Madrid boss Vicente del Bosque to promote him to the main squad, and he scored in all three official competitions he appeared for the club (La Liga, Copa del Rey and UEFA Champions League); between 2001 and 2002 he represented Ciudad de Murcia and its neighbours Real Murcia, respectively in divisions three and two.

Zárate played with Livingston in the 2002–03 season, still owned by Vélez.[1] He netted twice on his debut in the Scottish Premier League, a 3–2 home win against Motherwell,[2] and eventually proved instrumental as the Livi Lions retained their division status.

Zárate's last loan would be with Ittihad FC in Saudi Arabia. Again with Vélez, scored 13 times in the 2004 Clausura Tournament, adding eight in the following year's Apertura. In the subsequent Clausura, Roly netted seven goals as his team won the national championship for the first time in seven years.

In the following years Zárate played in Mexico for two teams, also representing Club Atlético River Plate without any impact. On 25 July 2009 he re-signed with Vélez on a free transfer, after a period of trial, from Ecuatorian club Barcelona Sporting Club, but was released during that year due to injury to his spinal cord; he returned to training in early 2010 and, eventually, signed a new one-year deal.

For the 2010–11 campaign 32-year-old Zárate joined Club Atlético Huracán in the top division, on a free transfer.[3] At the end of the season, Huracán was tied with Gimnasia y Esgrima de La Plata for the second-to-last position in the relegation ranking, and thus needed to play a tiebreaker, losing it 0–2.

Following Huracán's relegation, Zárate's contract with the Parque Patricios side ended, and he joined another club in the second level, Defensa y Justicia, again on a free transfer.

International career

Zárate made his debut for Argentina in 2005, a friendly match with Mexico in which the former only fielded players from the domestic league. He scored in a 1–1 draw.

Also in that year Zárate made his second and last appearance, playing 15 minutes in a 2–1 win in Bolivia for the 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.[4]

International goals

Goal Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 4 February 2005 Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, United States  Mexico 0–1 1–1 Friendly



Vélez Sársfield
Real Madrid



Zárate has three brothers, all footballers: younger Mauro and older Sergio and Ariel, with the first two eventually representing the Argentine national team.[5]


External links

  • Vélez Sarsfield official profile (Spanish)
  • Argentine League statistics (Spanish)
  • BDFA profile (Spanish)
  • BDFutbol profile
  • Rolando Zárate at
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