Pics: Eusebio’s coffin laid out in the centre of the pitch at the Estadio da Luz
The final wish of one of the all-time legends of the game was granted before his funeral in Lisbon today.
The Benfica and Portugal legend died aged 71 at the weekend, with his passing prompting a flood of tributes from some of the leading figures in the game and reflections on what was a glittering career at club level – he scored over 727 goals in 715 appearances and won a hatful of trophies with Benfica – and on the international stage, where he scored 41 goals in 64 appearances for Portugal.
The Portuguese Government declared three days of mourning following his passing and Benfica fans were given one last chance to pay tribute to him ahead of his funeral today when, in accordance with his final wish, his coffin was transported around the stadium and laid in the centre of the pitch at the Estadio da Luz before the funeral service later in the day.
The level of worship commanded by Eusebio was also evident in the number of tributes surrounding his statue outside the stadium, with fans from other clubs as well as Benfica keen to show their appreciation for one of the all-time greats.
RIP Eusebio, you’ll be sorely missed.
Pics via Getty