First Malaysian footballer to play in a top tier of a European league

On 21st May 2012, midfielder Nazmi Faiz Mansor (born August 1994, Kuala Lumpur) signed a 3 year contract with Sport Clube Beira-Mar (S.C. Beira-Mar), a Portuguese first division football club.

No other Malaysian has ever reached this level, not Akmal Rizal, Safee Sali, Irwan Fadzli Idrus or Titus James Palani.

His achievement earned him praises from José Mourinho.

Even legend Eusébio played there, albeit towards the end of his career in the mid 1970s.

As of June 2012, UEFA ranked Portugal’s Primeira Liga the fifth strongest league in Europe, after the English Premier League, Spanish Primera Liga, German Bundesliga and Italian Serie A. That means it’s ranked higher than the French Ligue 1 and the Dutch Football League!

Come August, surely Malaysians would want to see how he fares with giants Porto FC, Sporting Lisbon and of course Benfica.

The club has struggled in recent years, relegated twice and finishing no higher than 11th in the top league.

Nazmi reputedly will be paid the equivalent of RM300,000 a month, more than 3 times what Safee Sali is earning at Pelita Jaya FC in Indonesia.

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