When Patrick Leal (Newton, Mass.) signed with Sporting CP in early September, it brought back memories for Anselmo “Jair” Ribeiro. Nearly 30 years ago, Jair joined Sporting’s junior team after graduating from Madison Park High School in Boston, Mass.
He offered up some words of advice for the 16-year-old midfielder who played locally for Valeo FC and the New England Revolution Academy.
“He’s going to learn a lot and, by next year, he’ll be a different player, a lot better player,” Jair said of Leal. “Sporting has a good system, one of the best development programs in Europe. It is definitely more competitive and it’s going to be good for him. The competition is just going to make him better.”