Saab History

The King of Football Who Loved SAAB

Portugal’s football king Eusébio and his favorite SAAB Sonett

Today’s football (soccer) players, thanks to their huge financial potential, mostly drive overpriced cars, which was not the case before. Football has changed drastically in the last twenty years. The most popular sport in the world brings more and more money, players are becoming more expensive, and salaries for football players are far higher. Whether footballers are overpaid or not is a debate for another place, but one thing is for sure, those who have a lot of money are happy to spend it on expensive or exotic cars.

Today’s footballers mostly choose super cars, such as various models of Ferrari, Maserati, Bentley, Bugatti and similar exotic cars, which the public indicates their prestigious status. It was not like that a few decades ago, football players earned less, but their choices were also different.

From left to right, Pelé, Brian Joy, and Eusébio
From left to right, Pelé, Brian Joy, and Eusébio

We have chosen to show you just one such football player who stood out from the crowd and chose our favorite Swedish brand – SAAB. He was, as he was called at the zenith of his popularity by the media, the “king of football” – the football player – Eusébio da Silva Ferreira (or just Eusébio), who was a Mozambican-born Portuguese footballer who played as a striker.

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There are automobiles that are classic for life due to their exclusivity. And there are unique individuals who touch people like no one else. Such was Eusébio, national sports hero of Portugal. At a time when the big players didn’t really enjoy a very wealthy life, Eusébio was the happy owner of several cars in the metropolis by the sea – Lisbon. Of these, noteworthy are the modest Ford Taunus and the adrenaline-filled Ford Mustang.

Probably Eusébio’s most distinguishing factor was his fondness for SAAB, the Swedish brand. According to reports, Eusébio founded a SAAB Cars dealership in Benfica, in partnership with Dantas de Barros, the brand’s official representative in in the territory of Portugal.

Eusébio's Saab Sonett in front of the Luz stadium.
Eusébio’s Saab Sonett in front of the Luz stadium.
Well known to many, the car that accompanied Eusébio for many years was the unusual SAAB Sonett. Today, it’s a classic, but full of history. Eusébio’s unusual taste also extended to all four wheels. The choice of an unusual and especially yellow SAAB sporty model was guaranteed to capture attention. It is known that today the classic in question is in the hands of a lucky collector.
Goran Aničić
the authorGoran Aničić
For over 10 years, Goran Aničić has been passionately focused on Saab automobiles and everything related to them. His initial encounter with Saab cars took place back in 2003 when the first Saab 9-3 and sedan version were introduced. At that moment, he was captivated by the car's Scandinavian design logic and top-notch engineering, and everything that followed stemmed from that first encounter. Later on, through his work at the editorial team of the Serbian automotive magazines "Autostart" and later "AutoBild," he had the opportunity to engage more closely with Saab vehicles. In 2008, he tested the latest Saab cars of that time, such as the Saab 9-3 TTiD Aero and Saab 9-3 Turbo X. In 2010, as the sole blogger from the region, he participated in the Saab 9-5ng presentation in Trollhättan, Sweden. Alongside journalists from around the world, he got a firsthand experience of the pinnacle of technological offerings from Saab at that time. Currently, Goran owns two Saabs: a 2008 Saab 9-3 Vector Sportcombi with a manual transmission, and a Saab 9-3 Aero Griffin Sport Sedan from the last generation, which rolled off the production line in Trollhättan in December 2011.

3 Comments

  • I’ve never seen a Saab Sonett live, though I’m born, bred and always have lived in Sweden. It’s a great and kind of querky (in a good way) looking car! Lovely pics 😍

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