A young centre-half signed from the Brazilian club Cruzeiro, the appropriately named Defendi is renowned for a deft left foot and a dominance in the air. He was first spotted as a 16-year-old by the then Tottenham Hotspur Director of Sport Frank Arnesen.
He became the first player signed under the ill-fated Frank Arnesen and Jacques Santini era at Spurs from Cruzeiro for a fee of £600,000 on July 3 2004, although he had to wait for his passport to arrive in August for the deal to be officially completed. He failed to make a first team appearance for Tottenham but featured in a number of reserve team matches.
He was deemed surplus to requirements by Tottenham Hotspur manager Martin Jol, as he was first allowed to travel back to Brazil to seek a contract with a new club which proved unsuccessful, before he was farmed out on loan to Udinese Calcio in January 2006. He made two league appearances before leaving for A.S. Roma in August 2006, again on loan. He made an appearance in the Champions League and in the Coppa Italia for the capital club, but didn't manage to play a league game in Serie A.
Defendi returned to Tottenham Hotpur from AS Roma after his loan period ended. On August 9 2007 Tottenham announced his departure to the Italian Serie B club U.S. Avellino on a permanent transfer.
Defendi became free agent after the bankruptcy of Avellino and returned Brazil. He joined Palmeiras reserves in March 2010.
18 May 2011, Defendi signed a contract with Portuguese Primeira Liga side Vitória Guimarães.