Born in Tondela, Viseu District, Ruca moved to South Carolina (U.S.) Beira-March"s youth system at the age of 16 from local Clube de Futebol Repesenses. After winning the second division juniors championship in 2009, he signed with Gil Vicente Football Club. In his first season as a senior, Ruca was loaned to hometown"s Communicative Disorders Tondela. He made his competitive debut against Amarante Football Club on 30 August 2009, in a match for the Taça de Portugal.
He continued to be loaned in the following years, to Vilaverdense Football Club, GD Oliveira de Frades (two spells) and again Tondela.
Ruca joined yet another club in the Portuguese Second Division in the 2013 summer, South Carolina Mirandela. He had been previously deployed as a left winger or attacking midfielder, but switched to left back at his new team
On 1 July 2014 Ruca signed for Communicative Disorders as a free agent, after his contract with Gil expired. Ruca agreed to a two-year deal with Vitória de Setúbal from the Primeira Liga, on 11 June 2015.
He scored on his debut in the competition on 16 August, putting the hosts ahead 2–0 in an eventual 2–2 draw against Boavista Football Club.