At the tender age of just 16, Cristiano Ronaldo graduated to Sporting Lisbon’s 1st team where he had already been marked as a rising star in their Youth Academy from a very young age. Now playing with the big boys, as part of one of the most distinguished clubs in Europe, the young player soon made his mark on the national and international footballing stage. After demonstrating his genius in the Portuguese Primeira Liga and as a dominant force in the Portuguese national squad (he is now the all-time leading goalscorer in the Champions League he has continued to dazzle the world during his time at Manchester United and, after a record-breaking £80 million transfer, at Real Madrid. He is now regarded as one of the best players in the world.
We are now pleased to offer school football coaching tours to Sporting Lisbon, where pupils can train at the same ground and with the same facilities that nurtured Cristiano Ronaldo’s budding talent. The widely admired Youth Academy at Sporting Clube de Portugal (to give them their official title) has a strong track record of developing some of the finest players in the world. Celebrated Manchester United winger Nani for a start, and Portuguese winger Luis Figo. Just like Cristiano Ronaldo, Figo was considered one of the finest players of his generation during his impressive career at Sporting Lisbon, FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, Internazionale and the Portuguese national team. It is not surprising therefore that Sporting Lisbon are such a major force in the Primeria Liga. With their distinctive green and white strip, they are part of Portugal’s big three clubs, alongside arch rivals Benfica and Porto. “The Lions” (Leoes) hold 48 domestic titles including winning the Premiership 18 times and the Portuguese Cup 16 times. Our school football pro-club tours give your students a valuable insight into the world of professional football. These immersive experiences will give them a flavour of life as an Academy player and the kind of hard work and determination that’s required to make it to the very top! Your trip to Sporting Lisbon can be adapted to your specific needs and requests but typically might include twice-daily professional coaching at the youth academy, 1-2 friendly matches against academy youth players, a chance to see the 1st team training, a behind the scenes tour of the home ground Estadio Jose Alvalade, and during the season (subject to availability) the possibility of match tickets to a Sporting Lisbon or FC Benfica home game. And with the historic city of Lisbon being one of the oldest cities in the world, we always try to fit in some sightseeing too. Accommodation is all on-site at the club’s superb training facilities which further helps students to feel they are being treated like professionals.