This Saturday, the Portuguese coach succeeded his compatriot Jorge Jesus as winner of the Libertadores Cup and became the sixth Portuguese coach to win the main competition of clubs in a continent.
Abel Ferreira joins the current Benfica coach, who led Flamengo to the South American title in 2019, after a final with River Plate (2-1), as well as Manuel José, who won in Africa, and Artur Jorge, José Mourinho and André Villas-Boas, winners in Europe.
Of this now sextet, the coach with the best record is, undoubtedly, Manuel José, now 74 years old, as he led the Egyptians of Al-Ahly to four victories in the African Champions.
Manuel José de Jesus Silva, born on April 9, 1946, collected a total of 20 titles for the whole of Cairo, where he is considered a God, including four victories in the CAF Champions League, in 2001, 2005, 2006 and 2008.
The South Africans from Mamelodi Sundowns (1-1 away and 3-0 at home), in 2001, the Tunisians from Étoile du Sahel (0-0 away and 3-0 at home), in 2005, and CS Sfaxien ( 1-1 at home and 1-0 away) in 2006, and the Cameroonians from Coton Sport (2-0 at home and 2-2 away) in 2008 were the teams defeated by Al-Ahly.
The coach who trained in Portugal, among others, Benfica, Sporting and Boavista, at the service of which he won a Portuguese Cup (1991/92) and a Super Cup (1992), also disputed a fifth final, which he lost, in 2007, in a second match against Étoile du Sahel (0-0 away and 1-3 at home).
With four African champion titles, Manuel José is in a unique place among Portuguese coaches, but the pioneer, the first to win, was Artur Jorge Braga de Melo Teixeira, aka Artur Jorge, now Arthur, 74 years old.
After the Hungarian Béla Guttmann led Benfica to two victories in the European Cup in 1960/61 and 1961/62, it was a Portuguese, a former player of Benfica and Académica, to give the first European scepter to the dragons, in 1986/87 season.
In Vienna, a heel goal by the Algerian magician Rabah Madjer and a goal by Brazilian substitute Juary, after Ludwig Kögl gave Bayern Munich an advantage, allowed FC Porto to beat the Germans 2-1 and become European champion.
The second Portuguese coach to win the main European club competition also did it for the blues and whites: it was José Mourinho, current coach of Tottenham, 57 years old, already in the Champions era, in the 2003/04 season.
A year after winning the UEFA Cup, Mourinho gave the ‘Dragons’ second European title, with a clear 3-0 win in the final against Monaco, beaten in Gelsenkirchen with goals from Brazilian Carlos Alberto, Portuguese international Deco and Russian Alenichev.
It was the first of two European titles for “Mou”, who won again six years later, in 2009/10, now at the helm of Inter Milan, who, in the Madrid final, beat Bayern Munich 2-0, with a Argentine Diego Milito’s ‘bis’.
The other Portuguese coach who has a Champions League in the history of the team is André Villas-Boas, former assistant of Mourinho, who, in 2011/12, started the season at Chelsea, but did not end it, being fired on March 4, 2012, halfway through the round of 16.
The current Marseille coach took part in seven London campaign campaigns, which he would already win under the command of Italian Roberto Di Matteo, after a final with Bayern – already beaten by Artur Jorge and Mourinho – won on penalties.
André Villas-Boas does not have the medal at home – as he would not have if he had been fired on the eve of the final – but the reality is that he coached Chelsea in seven of the 13 games in the 2011/12 Champions League. He is also champion of Europe.