Rangy and skilful midfielder, who came to Spurs after a long chase, Sandro struggled initially to fit into the English game. His rise in Brazil had been highly starred and he was elevated to the full international side very early, as his style was not typically Brazilian, but was heavily European influenced.
Spurs had tracked him for some time and while a first approach failed to come to fruition, a sporting liaison with his club Internacional helped to ease through a transfer for the tall midfield man. A final fee of around £8.4 million was agreed and he stayed with his club until the end of their Copa Libertadores campaign, which saw Internacional win the trophy for the first time in the summer of 2010.
Sandro moved to Europe after the tournament and was immediately off with the national side, but he had been learning English and had been watching Tottenham's progress to the Champions League on TV back home in Brazil. He was introduced into English football in the North London derby in a League Cup tie, where Arsenal had traditionally fielded weakened teams, but on this occasion out out a near full-strength side. Sandro did well and when Spurs were taken to extra time, he kept going in a personally solid display of defensive and counter-attacking play, but the visitors won in extra-time.
Omitted from the club's Champions League squad because of his late arrival, his opportunities were limited and he often was more noted for receiving the attention of referee's as he was not afraid of the physical side of the game, but looked a real prospect, as he is athletic, strong and can pass well. His play in the games against Internazionale and AC Milan in the Champions league proved this and gave Spurs a platform to build from.
When Harry Redknapp was dismissed as Tottenham boss in the summer of 2012, rumours circulated that the Brazilian was being lined up for moves to the continent, with Real Madrid and AC Milan supposedly interested in signing him. However, a successful Olympic Games campaign with his country in reaching the final saw his stock rise and new Head Coach Andre Villas-Boas had plans for him, pairing him with new signing Mousa Dembele as a defensive shield in front of the back four, but with a brief to go forward. This was working very well until Sandro twisted a knee falling in a game at QPR in January 2013, putting him out for the rest of the season with a knee ligament injury that needed surgery.
When he came back, he found a raft of players coming into the midfield on the back of the money raised from Gareth Bale's sale, including Etienne Capoue and fellow Brazilian Paulinho, but he got a few games under his belt before Andre Villas-Boas was sacked and Tim Sherwood was installed a Head Coach. The new incumbent preferred the players he knew from the Development squad and Nabil Bentaleb came in to replace Sandro in the defensive two.
After a summer when another new Head Coach came in - Mauricio Pochettino - injuries had perhaps taken their toll on Sandro and in the 2014 summer transfer window at the start of that season he was sold to QPR linking up with former manager Harry Redknapp.