November 19, 2022

Paulo Futre, Jorge Mendes and José Mourinho received their Thinking Football Summit Awards from Pedro Proença

The second day of the Thinking Football Summit was marked by the announcement of the Merit Awards to three legendary representatives of Portuguese Football. Pedro Proença, President of Liga Portugal, handed the awards to Paulo Futre, Jorge Mendes and José Mourinho, as a tribute to their careers linked to the Football industry, as well as their leading role in putting Portugal in the spotlight of world football.

"It is something that Liga Portugal is proud of, the place we occupy at the international level. We generate talent in any part of the world", Pedro Proença started by saying in his introduction speech to the ceremony.

"We have the best agent, the best coach, the best players and the best referees, but we also do extraordinary things at an organisational level. The strength of the Liga Portugal brand and of being Portuguese is quite evident and the men who will be awarded are an example of this. They fill us with pride and are the brand that carries the name of our country abroad", he added.

The football legend Paulo Futre reminded us of his glorious past and gave some advice to the younger players: "As time went by, I became aware of the doors I opened. My advice? The first, second and third are education. The fourth: play football. And dream big. If they are lucky, they can achieve great things."

Jorge Mendes thanked Liga Portugal for the award and praised the organisation of the Thinking Football Summit 2022. "It is a prize that fills me with pride and also because it is awarded by a great Portuguese institution. Congratulations on this excellent initiative, which has been a complete success. Despite being the first edition, this is a very important event, which has been praised by all", he stressed.

Lastly, the third award of the afternoon was given to José Mourinho, who has also shown his appreciation to the organization that governs Professional Football: "I want to thank Liga Portugal, in the person of the President Pedro Proença. The first time he saw me he sent me off, and the last time was in a Chelsea-PSG game, where we move on to the semi-finals of the Champions League. Time passes but my respect for you grows, and you know you can count on me to elevate the name of Liga Portugal. To Paulo and Jorge, it is an honour to be here with them. They are great friends who have come a long way and will surely continue on that path."

After handing out the awards, the highlight goes to incredible stories from their past that were shared with the whole audience, as well as José Mourinho's presence at the audience for the panel discussion "The Key Aspects of Building a Squad", with Tiago Pinto, General Manager at AS Roma, as one of the speaker.

Click HERE to see the ceremony recap.