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Photo by José Cruz

"Impossible to be here and not learn"

By Jornal Sporting
27 Apr, 2017

Aurélio Pereira adds his backing to The Future of Football International Congress

Two days packed with international football's top names would not be complete without the presence of Sporting CP scouting legend Aurélio Pereira. Speaking at The Future of Football International Congress, Pereira congratulated the club for hosting what is now the third edition of the event.

"Firstly, I would like to say that it is always an honour to take part in this type of event, organised by our club. These kinds of events are not easy to put together and some fantastic things have already been said here on various levels. People involved in youth coaching have to listen and learn and that is what we want. The world is about learning, our lives are about learning. It would be impossible to be here and not learn something", said Pereira.

Photo by César Santos

“Always guided by the club's values"

By Jornal Sporting
28 Jan, 2017

Sporting CP scouting hero Aurélio Pereira given Lisbon award

Estádio Universitário de Lisboa hosted a fitting ceremony in tribute to Sporting CP scouting legend Aurélio Pereira this weekend. Alvalade's chief scout was awarded with the Lisbon Municipal Medal for Sports Merit by city mayor Fernando Medina, in a ceremony attended by Bruno de Carvalho and representatives of Sporting CP's various youth sides.

“I think that more important than receiving awards is deserving them. Everything I have done throughout my career was always guided by the club's values and with a lot of respect for young players. That was key in getting the lads to show their qualities. Friendship and respect have always been the most important things to me", said Pereira after the ceremony.

Lisbon mayor Fernando Medina was also on hand to explain the decision behind the award: "It is really fair that the city of Lisbon should give this award. Aurélio Pereira has given a lot to our city and out country, both in terms of training the icons of Portuguese football and in terms of training thousands of young players and passing on the values that make them into better citizens."

Photo by César Santos

"We are like family"

By Jornal Sporting
16 Oct, 2016

Aurélio Pereira in UEFA interview about the Alvalade youth system

He arrived in Alvalade at the age of just 14 and years later he was invited back to the club by Hilário, where he would remain for two decades as a youth team coach. In July 1988 he opened the youth football department and went on to discover Luís Figo, Cristiano Ronaldo, Paulo Futre, Simão Sabrosa, Ricardo Quaresma, Nani and an endless list of others.

Aurélio Pereira sat down with UEFA this week to reflect in his time with the Sporting Academy, even revealing some of the tricks to his magical recipe for nurturing talent.

“As soon as we made contact with a player coming from far away, our objective focuses on bringing him over to the Sporting Academy. We are responsible for a massive change in the lives of young players who could become greats one day. We look to build up the lads as players, but also as men. We focus on everything involved in their development and that forges a special link between us. I have known some of the lads who are now in the main team since they were just 12 years' old. We are like family", opened the Alvalade scouting legend, going on to speak about Cristiano Ronaldo: "When we were building the Academy, the players had to move away from the old stadium and come and live at the residence. There was a road nearby where Ronaldo would go. He would put weights on his legs and when the traffic lights turned green he started sprinting. He did that a lot, because he thought it would give him speed and strength. That gives us an idea of what these lads go through."

Photo by César Santos

"We give our young players creative liberty"

By Jornal Sporting
12 Sep, 2016

Aurélio Pereira on Cristiano Ronaldo and the secrets of the Sporting Academy

Just two days away from seeing his most famous student, Cristiano Ronaldo, face Sporting in the Champions League, the Sporting youth football legend Aurélio Pereira spoke about the world famous CR7 and the philosophy of the Sporting Academy.

"Knowing Cristiano Ronaldo like I do, he won't go easy on us. You can't take the professionalism out of him. At the beginning he was just an 11-year old lad from Madeira who arrived at the Academy without his parents. In 1997 he cost a lot of money. A day after he got here he was already training with the older lads and he had a capacity that we were not used to seeing. The older players all said that he was something different and he was. On top of his technical quality he had speed and could get away from his marker. He had a bit of skill in the air too", opened Pereira.

Asked to reveal the secrets of the success of the Sporting Academy, the Alvalade legend added: "Talent is one thing, but audacity is another. Players are only human and sometimes you forget that, but Ronaldo had a way of speaking with the rest of the players. On the second day he was completely relaxed with everyone, when anyone else would have packed their bags and went home if faced by the same thing. Youth football is in this club's DNA, it is in our culture. We give our young players creative liberty and we don't format anyone. We are really patient with them and treat them as people."

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