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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Jan 22, 2008

Edmundo and Romario to reunite at Vasco?

RIO DE JANEIRO, Jan 21 (Reuters) - Former Brazil international Edmundo rejoined Vasco da Gama on Monday and is likely to be coached by former attacking partner Romario.

Edmundo, 36, returns to Vasco for at the twilight of a chequered career that has been marred by disciplinary problems.

Edmundo told a news conference that he intended to see out his playing days at the club where he began his career.

A reputation for violent conduct and other disciplinary problems earned Edmundo the nickname "The Animal", but Vasco fans use the moniker affectionately and remember him best for his powerful runs on goal on rasping shots.

Several hundred gathered at the club's Sao Januario stadium on Monday to chant his name.

Edmundo's career reached its zenith during title-winning spells with Palmeiras and Vasco in the mid-1990s, but moves to Fiorentina and Napoli fell flat when the player failed to adapt to Italian life.

He played alongside Romario during his third spell with Vasco but the two fell out publicly. In one famous incident Romario labelled his rival "the court jester" and Edmundo was forced out of the club in 2000.

Edmundo seemed to be on the verge of retirement two years ago, but he responded by surprised his critics by seizing the opportunity of a short term contract with Palmeiras.

He was without a club when Vasco president Eurico Miranda offered him another one-year contract.

"I'm very happy. I watch the Vasco games from afar and I've never stopped missing this club. I jumped at the chance to come back here," Edmundo said.

Romario was named as Vasco da Gama's player-coach in December but is currently restricted to a backroom role after testing positive for the banned masking agent finasteride. The 1994 World Cup striker is serving a 120-day doping ban, but has blamed the incident on a hair-loss product he said he had been using.

Romario has not officially retired from playing and could even partner Edmundo again when the ban is lifted.

"I was told that Romario was the one who suggested that I be called back to the club and that gave me enormous satisfaction," Edmundo said.

"There always been real affection between us no matter what problems we have had in the past."

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