Associacao Atletica Ponte Preta (Portuguese pronunciation: [ɐsosjɐˈsɐ̃w ɐˈtlɛtʃikɐ ˈpotʃi ˈpɾetɐ]), commonly referred to as simply Ponte Preta, is a Brazilian association football club in Campinas, Sao Paulo. They currently play in the Serie B, the second tier of Brazilian football, as well as in the Campeonato Paulista Serie A1, the top tier of the Sao Paulo state football league.
Ponte Preta is also known as Macaca. Ponte Preta's biggest rival is from the same city, Guarani, against whom matches are known as derby campineiro (derbi campineiro in Portuguese). They are known as "pontepretanos". Ponte Preta is the second oldest football team established in Brazil still in activity, founded on August 11, 1900, the oldest being Sport Club Rio Grande, of Rio Grande do Sul.
Ponte Preta was founded on August 11, 1900, by Colegio Culto a Ciencia students Miguel do Carmo (nicknamed "Migue"), Luiz Garibaldi Burghi, (nicknamed "Gigette") and Antonio de Oliveira (nicknamed "Tonico Campeao"), nearby a black painted wood railroad bridge, so the name Ponte Preta (which means "black bridge", in English). Ponte Preta's first president was Pedro Vieira da Silva.
The team's history is directly intertwined with the railroad business that was flourishing in its city of Campinas. Most of the people involved with the foundation of the team were residents of the working-class neighbourhood by the railroad. One of the team's first nicknames was the "Train of August 11th". Ponte's stadium, the Estadio Moises Lucarelli, is located right by the railroad in a way where it is possible to see it when inside the stadium, and according to the fans, when the train passes by during a game, it is a sign of good luck to come for the team.
Ponte Preta is recognized, by FIFA, as one of the first teams in the Americas to accept black players, since its foundation in 1900. The club claims to be the first football team ever to have a black player in their roster, that player being the before mentioned Miguel do Carmo, who was part of their first squad. It is also the first countryside team to play a national competition, in 1970.
Pele's last match in Brazil was against Ponte Preta. On September 2, 1974, at Vila Belmiro stadium, Santos defeated Ponte Preta 2–0.
Ponte Preta lost the Campeonato Paulista final to Corinthians in 1977 in a controversial game that ended in a 2–1 final score. Rui Rey, an important piece of the Ponte Preta team, was shown a red card early in the game. Ponte Preta were considered the favorites for the championship that year.
On November 27, 2013, at the Romildo Ferreira stadium, Ponte Preta reached the 2013 Sudamericana final by defeating Sao Paulo (4–2 on aggregate) in the semi finals. It was a historical time for the club, which was playing its first international cup. The final was against Lanus, a Traditional Argentine team, with Ponte Preta finishing as runner up.
This page also has a version in other languages: Понте-Прета (русский)