Raí Souza Vieira de Oliveira (born 15 May 1965), ([ʁaˈi]), is a Brazilian retired footballer who played as an attacking midfielder.
He spent the better part of his 15-year career with São Paulo and Paris Saint-Germain, winning 10 major titles with the two teams combined, and nearing the 100-goal mark. He is the younger brother of more famous Brazilian footballer Sócrates.
Raí played with Brazil for more than one decade, helping the country win the 1994 World Cup.
Born in Ribeirão Preto, São Paulo, Raí started his career with local Botafogo Futebol Clube (SP), signing in 1986 with Associação Atlética Ponte Preta, with which he made his Série A debuts.
Raí joined São Paulo FC for the 1987 season, only making his league debut on 18 October due to injury. He only scored once in his first year but, following the arrival of Telê Santana as coach, blossomed into a prolific scorer, scoring 28 overall in the 1991 campaign as the team won both the regional Campeonato Paulista and the National Championship.
In 1992, Raí was part of the São Paulo team that won the club's first ever Copa Libertadores, scoring the only goal of the final second-leg against Newell's Old Boys that took the match to a penalty shootout. Later that year, he was instrumental in the defeat of FC Barcelona in the 1992 Intercontinental Cup, netting both goals in a 2–1 win in Tokyo. This form saw Raí named South American Footballer of the Year for 1992.
In the 1993 season, São Paulo defended their Copa Libertadores title, with Raí again scoring in the final as CD Universidad Católica were beaten 5–1 at the Estádio do Morumbi.
In June 1993, Raí was acquired by Paris Saint-Germain F.C. of France for US$4.6 million, remaining with São Paulo until the end of the year. He still managed to contribute with six goals in 28 Ligue 1 games as his new club won the national championship for the second time in its history; he helped PSG to the following season's French Cup, and was on target in the League Cup final against SC Bastia (2–0).
Raí once again proved essential as the capital outfit won the 1996 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup, scoring twice in a 3–1 home win against Parma AC, after a 0–1 away loss. He also appeared in the final against SK Rapid Wien, and went on to score three seasons in double digits during his five-season spell.
At the age of 33, Raí returned to São Paulo. He retired at the end of the 1999 season, after having appeared in only 15 games.
Raí gained the first of his 49 caps for Brazil in 1987, whilst at São Paulo, being selected to that year's Copa América in Argentina, playing twice – including in the 0–4 group stage loss against Chile – in an eventual group stage exit. His debut occurred on 19 May at the Rous Cup, playing 15 minutes in a 1–1 draw against England.
Raí was picked by coach Carlos Alberto Parreira for his 1994 FIFA World Cup squad. He scored through a penalty in the first match, a 2–0 win against Russia, after Romário was brought down in the box: a starter in the first three games, he was used as a substitute against the Netherlands (quarterfinals, ten minutes) and Sweden (semifinal, 45 minutes) as the national team went on to win the tournament.São Paulo
Intercontinental Cup: 1992
Libertadores Cup: 1992, 1993
Brazilian League: 1991
São Paulo State League: 1987, 1989, 1991, 1992, 1998
UEFA Cup Winners' Cup: 1995–96; Runner-up 1996–97
French League: 1993–94
French Cup: 1994–95, 1997–98
French Supercup: 1995
French League Cup: 1994–95
FIFA World Cup: 1994
Copa América: Runner-up 1991
Bola de Prata: 1989
Intercontinental Cup Most Valuable Player of the Match Award: 1992
South American Footballer of the Year: 1992
South American Team of the Year: 1992
ESM Team of the Year: 1995–96
Laureus Sport for Good Award: 2012
Raí's older brother, Sócrates, was also a footballer and an attacking midfielder. He too represented Botafogo de São Paulo in his career, and was also a longtime Brazilian international.
After retiring, Raí became a social activist and justice campaigner, being involved in two separate philanthropic organisations.