|Full name||Rodrigo David Meléndez Araya|
|Date of birth||30 October 1977|
|Place of birth||Santiago, Chile|
|Height||1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)|
|Playing position||Defensive midfielder|
|Current club||San Luis de Quillota|
|2013–||San Luis de Quillota||0||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 10:46, 10 April 2011 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).
Rodrigo David Meléndez Araya (born 3 October 1977 in Santiago) is Chilean footballer who plays for Chilean Primera División team San Luis de Quillota. He mainly plays as a defensive midfielder. Meléndez is a hard tackling player and in his prime was widely regarded as the best footballer of Chile in 2003.
Meléndez joined Cobreloa youth ranks at 12 in 1990, after of be rejected by the Chilean biggest clubs Colo-Colo and Universidad de Chile. After six years in Cobreloa youth ranks, he was promoted to the club first professional team in 1996.
With the pass of time, he was a regular in the team's starting XI. In the season 2003, Meléndez had an excellent season, winning the Torneo de Apertura title and also being named the Chilean Footballer of the Year.
After his great season in Cobreloa, Meléndez was signed by Argentine side Quilmes for play the Torneo de Apertura 2003. He made his league debut with club on 3 August, in a 3–1 win to Atlético Rafaela.
Meléndez was a frequently in Quilmes' starting XI, making a good season and also his team surprised to many Argentine fans for finish in the 4th position in the Apertura of this year and the Clausura 2004. Finally, Meléndez had 32 appearances with Quilmes in total, after making his move to Estudiantes de La Plata, an Argentine biggest club.
This club signed Meléndez for the next two seasons. During his stay with the club and with the pass of time, he become of fans favourite player, according to many supporters of Estudiantes. The club finished fourth in both tournaments, the Torneo Apertura 2004 and Torneo Clausura 2005. In the next tournament, he acted in few occasions.
After several negotiations between Colo-Colo and Estudiantes, the club reached an agreement for Meléndez in a one-year loan contract with the club. He made his club debut on 25 February 2006 in a 4–1 win against Palestino, and scored his first goal against Santiago Morning. Meléndez played his first derby against Universidad de Chile in a 3–1 away win. The club finished in the first place of the table, qualifying to the playoffs and to the Copa Sudamericana. Colo-Colo also proclaimed champion of the league, defeating to the archirival Universidad de Chile on penalties.
In the second semester, the club once completed an excellent season, winning the second league title of the Torneo de Apertura, in where Meléndez scored the last goal in the first leg final 3–0 home win to Audax Italiano at Estadio Monumental. The club also was runner-up of the Copa Sudamericana, after of loss the final for a 3–2 aggregate loss against Pachuca, including Meléndez was a starter during all tournament.
During December 2006 and January 2007, was supposed that Meléndez would return to Argentina, but he remained in Colo-Colo for the next season after several negotiation.
After the successful season of the last season, Melendez was a key player in the bichampionship of his team, which together with the other two titles won in 2006, Colo-Colo achieved the tetra-championship, an historic event in the Chilean football. In the next seasons, Mélendez was treated for "responsible" for the bad seasons of his team, except in the titles of the 2008 Clausura and 2009 Clausura, in where otherwise, he was considered as the leader of both titles.
In December 2010, it was announced that Meléndez, along with his team-mate Arturo Sanhueza, with who make a dupla, would leave Colo-Colo on a free transfer after his contract was not renewed.
Meléndez would have been a part of the 2000 Chilean Olympic team in Sidney but missed the competition due to injury. He was part of Nelson Acosta's preolympic team that went on to win the Olympic bronze medal.
Meléndez made his international debut on July 1, 2001 against Brazil. During the 2006 FIFA World Cup qualification, Meléndez was a regular starter for Chile during the first-half of the tournament. However, a defensive-midfielder duo of Claudio Maldonado and David Pizarro relegated Melendez to the bench. Chile failed to qualify for the 2006 FIFA World Cup after drawing to Ecuador in the last game.
After being absent from the national team in the friendly games played throughout 2006, Kalule returned to be considered a starter in 2007 Copa América but an injury sent him out of the field halfway through the second game. Chile was eliminated from the tournament before Melendez could recover and he has not been called up again since.
Meléndez lone goal with La Roja came against Uruguay in a 2-1 loss in Montevideo.
|1.||15 November 2003||Montevideo, Uruguay||Uruguay||2–1||Loss||2006 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|Apertura 2003||Cobreloa||Primera Division Chile Champion|
|Apertura 2006||Colo-Colo||Primera Division Chile Champion|
|Clausura 2006||Colo-Colo||Primera Division Chile Champion|
|Apertura 2007||Colo-Colo||Primera Division Chile Champion|
|Clausura 2007||Colo-Colo||Primera Division Chile Champion|
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