Eusebio da Silva Ferreira, The Black Panther

Long before Cristiano Ronaldo, there was this dude named Eusebio. They called him ‘The Black Panther’… because, you know, Eusebio was born in Africa. (Jury’s out on whether or not that nickname was racist, but I’d guess it’s one of these Washington Redskins-type things that was appropriate at the time because the minorities affected didn’t have a voice. Everyone thought it was fine because they weren’t listening to the ones who’d mind. So, yeah, it’s probably a little racist.)

But the name fit, according to Wikipedia:

“He was known for his speed, technique, athleticism and his ferocious, accurate right-footed shot, making him an outstanding prolific goalscorer and one of the greatest free-kick takers in history. He is considered Benfica’s and Portugal’s most renowned player.”

Eusebio helped Portugal to third place at the 1966 World Cup, leading the tournament in scoring en route to the Bronze Ball.

With Benfica, Eusebio led the club to 11 Primeira Liga titles between 1961 and 1975 and one European Cup in 1962.

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