quarta-feira, junho 15, 2005

Michael Pereira: Luso-Canadiano nos juvenis

Originally uploaded by morphy.
A selecção Canadiana de sub-17 é capitaneada por um luso-descendente: Michael Pereira. Trata-se de um possante centro campista, com apenas 16 anos (d.n. 9/3/1989), e ao que parece era também cobiçado por Sporting e Newcastle, mas escolheu o FC Porto para se aventurar no futebol europeu. As condições oferecidas pelo FC Porto tiveram o seu peso: dois anos de contrato (mais dois de opção), despesas, 700 euros e inscrição num colégio.
Another Londoner heading to a soccer-crazy country shortly is Michael Pereira. The 16-year-old phenom, who plays with Canada's under-17 team, has signed a contract with 2004 Portuguese champion FC Porto's development team. He leaves for Portugal at the end of July for "a new life." Pereira was courted by some big-time soccer clubs, including Newcastle and Sporting, and chose Porto because he has relatives nearby. The player, who speaks Portuguese, also liked the package the team offered. That includes $700 a month as well as expenses, and enrolment in a private international school.

Porto has made a two-year commitment to the centre midfielder -- who also plays for the provincial squad and Martin Painter's London Dynamite -- with an opportunity to renew for two more years. "When they asked me to stay, I was just in shock," said Pereira, who scored two goals for Canada last month in a 5-0 victory over Haiti. "I'm starting a new life. I'm nervous . . . scared a little bit. "I'm leaving behind an amazing life," the Grade 10 CCH student said. "At the beginning, I thought a lot about that. But now I've made up my mind and I'm going over there with the intention of staying for good."

Pereira travelled to Portugal with his family in March. He said Porto officials were impressed with his physical makeup and condition. LFP