Raúl Mario Ruidíaz Misitich (Spanish pronunciation: , Croatian: Misitić, born 25 July 1990) is a Peruvian footballer who currently plays for Seattle Sounders FC and the Peru national team, as a striker.
He is of maternal Croatian descent and his nickname, the Peruvian Messi, stems from his small frame and his ability to get past defenders with great ball control. Ruidíaz began his career at Universitario de Deportes, a powerhouse of a club in Peru, where he became an idol during the 2011 season, at just 21 years old. In January 2012, he joined Primera División club Universidad de Chile.
Ruidíaz grew up in the Lima neighbourhood of Villa María del Triunfo and made his first steps in club football at Primera División club Universitario de Deportes aged eight. In January 2008, the player was promoted to the first adult team and immediately loaned to América Cochahuayco, the club's filial team, directed by the coach Héctor Chumpitaz, an historic football player of the Peruvian national team in the 1982 World Cup. His first professional goal was against Hijos de Acosvinchos. After the arrival of Jorge Gonzáles, he began to play as a striker.