Having received support for several years, the Benfica Olympic project is part of the Club’s sports policy. Not exactly a recent reality, with origins in the Club’s eclecticism, only in recent years has the current Presidency decided, with great commitment, to confer it an increased status, also by including other sports.
Ever since the Olympics started being held continuously, in 1948, several Benfica athletes have participated in the Games as a result of planned and achieved objectives. Among others, the legendary Matos Fernandes, Tomás Paquete, Eduardo Albuquerque, Vilar Santos and, in athletics, Fernando Silva and António Leitão.
"The Olympic project is part of the Club, with its magic and mystique"
From London to Beijing, the athletes Alexandre Yokochi (swimming) and, nowadays, Nélson Évora (athletics), Vanessa Fernandes and Bruno Pais (triathlon) and Telma Monteiro (judo) brought great prestige to both Sport Lisboa e Benfica and Portugal. We are not an elitist institution. Benfica has grass-roots origins and, in a society that confers prominence to it, always had social responsibility, which translated in fostering wide-ranging and undifferentiated sports.
Our DNA is unique. We are a multicultural club where all creeds, races or ideologies fit in an integrated way. Thus, although with sustained development, our Olympic project has to emanate from this new idiosyncrasy.
It’s part of the Club, with its magic and mystique.
Ana Oliveira - Olympic Project Coordinator