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José Alejandro Morales Meira (born January 21, 2001) was an Uruguayan association football player who played primarily as a striker. Regarded as one of the best players in the history of the sport and viewed as the finest pure goalscorer in history, as well as one of the best players of the 2020s decade, Morales was a youth prospect at Penarol before moving to Europe, where he played for Liverpool, Roma and Real Madrid until his move to Los Angeles FC in 2035, where he would play until his retirement at age 38 at the conclusion of the 2039 season. He also played, nearly without absence, for the Uruguayan national team from his breakout performance at the age of 17 at the 2018 FIFA World Cup until his retirement from the men's team after the 2037 Confederations Cup, in which time he became the first player to ever score 100 goals for Uruguay and earned the most caps in the national team's history, and captained the side continuously for twelve years (2025-2037). Outside of football, Morales became known as the most high-profile gay athlete in history after he came out shortly after his 20th birthday, leading him to become a lightning rod of discussion and controversy both among social conservatives and among LGBT advocates.

Among his several accomplishments, Morales was the top goalscorer in Liverpool history and was part of European sides at three different clubs that won six Champions League titles, ten league titles, _ national cups, one Europa League, six European Super Cups and six FIFA Club World Cups. He is the only player in history to have been a member of three treble-winning sides at three different clubs. He led the Premier League and Serie A in goals scored on nine occasions and on four occasions was the top scorer in Champions League play. Morales earned the Ballon d'Or on three occasions - twice with Liverpool in 2023 and 2026, and with Roma in 2030. After 2035 he left for LAFC, becoming the highest-paid player in MLS history, where in his mid-thirties he led the club to three straight MLS Cups, including back-to-back trebles, and won the CONCACAF Champions League in 2038. After an injury-plagued 2039 campaign, Morales returned to his boyhood club Penarol in December of that year, signing a contract at the age of 38, but retired from the sport two weeks later without playing a single match.

With Uruguay, Morales won nearly every feasible award, earning Best Young Player at the 2019 Copa América, winning the Golden Ball at the 2026 World Cup and winning the Golden Shoe both in 2026 and 2030, while earning doubles of Most Valuable Player as well as Top Scorer at the 2027 Copa América, the 2029 FIFA Confederations Cup, and the 2031 Copa América. Morales was part of a Uruguayan side that between 2018 and 2035 enjoyed one of the best runs in the history of the sport, earning four straight top-four finishes in the World Cup, including finalist status in 2026 and a third World Cup championship in 2030, while winning four straight Copa América titles from 2023 through 2035 and winning the 2029 Confederations Cup four years after coming second in the 2025 edition, when he also was the top scorer with four goals. Uruguay's worst finishes with Morales as a regular contributor were third at the 2019 Copa América, third at the 2022 World Cup, quarterfinalist in 2034, and fourth place in the 2037 Confederations Cup.

Honours and achievements Edit

Club Edit

  • Premier League: 2020, 2022, 2025, 2026
  • FA Cup: 2026
  • League Cup:
  • Serie A: 2030, 2031, 2032, 2033
  • Coppa Italia: 2030, 2033
  • La Liga: 2034, 2035
  • Copa del Rey: 2034, 2035
  • Supercopa de Espana: 2034
  • UEFA Champions League: 2021, 2023, 2026, 2030, 2032, 2034
  • UEFA Europa League: 2024
  • UEFA Super Cup: 2021, 2023, 2024, 2026, 2030, 2032, 2034
  • MLS Cup: 2036, 2037, 2038
  • Supporters Shield: 2036, 2037
  • Lamar Hunt US Open Cup: 2036, 2037
  • CONCACAF Champions League: 2038

International Edit

  • FIFA U-17 World Cup: 2017
  • Fourth-place FIFA World Cup: 2018
  • Fourth-place FIFA Confederations Cup: 2037
  • Third-place Copa América: 2019
  • Third-place FIFA Confederations Cup: 2033
  • Third-place FIFA World Cup: 2022
  • Runners-up FIFA Confederations Cup: 2025
  • Runners-up FIFA World Cup: 2030
  • Copa América: 2023, 2027, 2031, 2035
  • FIFA Confederations Cup: 2029
  • FIFA World Cup: 2026

Individual Edit

Awards

  • PFA Player of the Year Award: 2020, 2022, 2023, 2025, 2026
  • Premier League Scoring Champion: 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023, 2025, 2026
  • Serie A Scoring Champion: 2030, 2033
  • MLS Scoring Champion: 2036, 2037
  • MLS Most Valuable Player: 2036, 2037, 2038
  • MLS Cup Most Valuable Player: 2036, 2038
  • Lamar Hunt US Open Cup Final Man of the Match: 2037
  • FIFA Ballon d'Or: 2023, 2026, 2030
  • FIFA World Cup Golden Ball: 2026
  • FIFA World Cup Golden Shoe: 2026, 2030
  • FIFA World Cup Silver Ball: 2030
  • FIFA Confederations Cup Golden Ball: 2029
  • FIFA Confederations Cup Golden Shoe: 2025, 2029
  • Copa América Best Young Player: 2019
  • Copa América Most Valuable Player: 2027, 2031
  • Copa América Top Scorer: 2027, 2031

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