Rui Águas (footballer)

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Rui Águas
Personal information
Full name José Rui Lopes Águas
Date of birth (1960-04-28) 28 April 1960 (age 59)
Place of birth Lisbon, Portugal
Height 1.79 m (5 ft 10 in)
Playing position Striker
Club information
Current team
Cape Verde (coach)
Youth career
1972–1974 Benfica
1974–1977 CAC Pontinha
1977–1978 Sporting CP
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1980–1982 Sesimbra
1982–1983 Atlético
1983–1985 Portimonense 46 (10)
1985–1988 Benfica 74 (35)
1988–1990 Porto 64 (30)
1990–1994 Benfica 99 (42)
1994 Estrela Amadora 9 (4)
1995 Reggiana 12 (0)
National team
1985–1993 Portugal 31 (10)
Teams managed
1996–1997 Portugal (assistant)
1999–2000 Estoril
2000 Vitória Setúbal
2002–2003 Marítimo (assistant)
2003–2006 Braga (assistant)
2014–2016 Cape Verde
2018– Cape Verde
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

José Rui Lopes Águas (born 28 April 1960) is a Portuguese former professional footballer who played as a striker, and is the manager of Cape Verde.

He had highly successful spells at two of the biggest clubs in Portugal, Benfica and Porto, amassing Primeira Liga totals of 291 games and 120 goals over 12 seasons.

Águas represented the Portugal national team at the 1986 World Cup.

Club career[edit]

Born in Lisbon, Águas started his career with local G.D. Sesimbra. He turned professional in the 1983–84 season, when he signed for Portimonense S.C. of the Primeira Liga from Atlético Clube de Portugal.

Moving to S.L. Benfica in 1985, Águas scored an average of 12 goals in his first spell, helping the capital club to the league on three occasions. He was present at the 1988 European Cup final, as they lost on penalties to PSV Eindhoven, 5–6.[1]

Águas joined FC Porto in summer 1988, winning the league in his second year and contributing to the conquest with 17 goals. However, he returned to Benfica after only two years, and proceeded to net a career-best 25 times in the first season upon his return as the team finished in top position; in the last round against S.C. Beira-Mar, the game after they had been crowned champions, he bagged two second-half goals in an eventual 3–0 home win, narrowly edging Porto's Domingos – who played first and scored four in a 5–0 victory over Vitória de Guimarães, finishing with 24 – in the Bola de Prata race.[2][3]

In the last edition of the European Cup, Águas suffered an horrific foot injury against FC Dynamo Kyiv,[4] but still managed five league goals in only 14 matches. Already 34, he moved clubs but stayed in Lisbon, joining lowly C.F. Estrela da Amadora; his career ended after an abroad spell which was his first and only at the age of 34, at Italy's A.C. Reggiana 1919.[5]

In the early 2000s, Águas coached Vitória F.C. and acted as assistant at C.S. Marítimo and S.C. Braga, managing six wins, three draws and nine losses for the first in the 1999–2000 campaign, which ended in top division relegation.[6][7][8][9][10][11]

International career[edit]

Águas played his first match for Portugal on 3 April 1985, a 0–2 loss to Italy in a friendly match. He was present at the 1986 FIFA World Cup, playing as a substitute in the 1–3 defeat against Morocco.

In total, Águas received 31 caps for the national team, scoring ten goals. His last game was for the 1994 World Cup qualifiers on 17 November 1993, losing to Italy 0–1.[12][13]

Águas was named Cape Verde coach in August 2014, replacing interim Men Ramires and signing a two-year contract.[14] He led them to three draws in the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations, in an eventual group phase elimination;[15][16][17] he resigned from his position on 1 January 2016, alleging unpaid wages.[18]

In February 2017, Águas was part of a candidate shortlist for the vacant Rwanda national team manager role.[19] He returned to the Cape Verde helm in May of the following year.[20]

Rui Águas: International goals
Goal Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition


1 20 September 1989 Stade de la Maladière, Neuchâtel, Switzerland   Switzerland 1–2 1–2 1990 World Cup qualification
2 6 October 1989 Generali Arena, Prague, Czechoslovakia  Czechoslovakia 1–1 2–1 1990 World Cup qualification
3 11 October 1989 Ludwigsparkstadion, Saarbrücken, West Germany  Luxembourg 0–1 0–3 1990 World Cup qualification
4 11 October 1989 Ludwigsparkstadion, Saarbrücken, West Germany  Luxembourg 0–2 0–3 1990 World Cup qualification
5 29 August 1990 Estádio da Luz (1954), Lisbon, Portugal  West Germany 1–1 1–1 Friendly
6 17 October 1990 Estádio das Antas, Porto, Portugal  Netherlands 1–0 1–0 Euro 1992 qualifying
7 23 January 1991 Olympic Stadium (Athens), Athens, Greece  Greece 1–1 3–2 Euro 1992 qualifying
8 20 February 1991 Estádio das Antas, Porto, Portugal  Malta 1–0 5–0 Euro 1992 qualifying
9 24 January 1993 Ta' Qali National Stadium, Ta' Qali, Malta  Malta 0–1 0–1 1994 World Cup qualification
10 10 November 1993 Estádio da Luz (1954), Lisbon, Portugal  Estonia 3–0 3–0 1994 World Cup qualification

Personal life[edit]

Águas' father, José, was a stellar footballer (also striker) for Benfica, mainly in the 50's.[21] He had two siblings, his sister Maria Helena (known as Lena d'Água) having a prolific career in the country's pop music.[22]

Águas' cousin, Raul Águas, was also a footballer and manager for several years. The former met his wife, Leonor, in college as they were from the same class. They fathered three children, son André (born in 1985), daughter Mariana (1987, who went on to work as a reporter at CMTV) and son Martim (1993) who was also a footballer.[23][24]







  1. ^ "European Competitions 1987–88". RSSSF. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  2. ^ "A outra bola de prata de Pena" [Pena's other silver ball] (in Portuguese). Mais Futebol. 20 August 2001. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  3. ^ a b Malheiro, João (July 2006). Memorial Benfica 100 Glórias [Benfica Memorial, 100 glories] (in Portuguese) (Third ed.). QuidNovi. p. 123. ISBN 978-972-8998-26-4.
  4. ^ Ribeiro, João Paulo (19 October 2016). "Rui Águas: "O Benfica é melhor que o Dínamo Kiev"" [Rui Águas: "Benfica is better than Dinamo Kiev"] (in Portuguese). Rádio Renascença. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  5. ^ "Pacchi dall'estero: Rui Aguas, il portoghese che la Reggiana comprò senza capire perché" [Parcels from abroad: Rui Aguas, the Portuguese that Reggiana bought without understanding why] (in Italian). Contra Ataque. 10 April 2015. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  6. ^ "Rui Águas: "Estou feliz mas o V. Setúbal tem de continuar a ganhar"" [Rui Águas: "I am happy but V. Setúbal must keep on winning"]. Record (in Portuguese). 28 February 2000. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  7. ^ "Rui Águas: "A única preocupação do V. Setúbal é vencer a U. Leiria"" [Rui Águas: "V. Setúbal's sole concern is to beat U. Leiria"]. Record (in Portuguese). 11 May 2000. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  8. ^ "Rui Águas: "Sou treinador"" [Rui Águas: "I am a coach"]. Record (in Portuguese). 17 May 2001. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  9. ^ "Rui Águas e João Cardoso são os adjuntos" [Rui Águas and João Cardoso are the assistants]. Record (in Portuguese). 8 July 2003. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  10. ^ Carvalho, Paula (7 December 2003). "Rui Águas (Sp. Braga): "A diferença no resultado é excessiva"" [Rui Águas (Sp. Braga): "Excessive difference in the scoreline"] (in Portuguese). Mais Futebol. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  11. ^ "Rui Águas: "Não nos podemos queixar"" [Rui Águas: "We cannot complain"]. Record (in Portuguese). 26 August 2005. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  12. ^ a b c d "Cabo Verde. Não há ninguém como Rui Águas" [Cape Verde. No one like Rui Águas]. i (in Portuguese). 1 April 2015. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  13. ^ "Portugal – Record International Players". RSSSF. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  14. ^ Moonda, Firdose (19 September 2014). "Cape Verde's fairytale rise shows no sign of slowing". ESPN FC. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  15. ^ "Tunisia 1–1 Cape Verde Islands". BBC Sport. 18 January 2015. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  16. ^ "DR Congo's Robert Kidiaba denies Cape Verde in Africa Cup of Nations". The Guardian. 22 January 2015. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  17. ^ "Cape Verde Islands 0–0 Zambia". BBC Sport. 26 January 2015. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  18. ^ "Rui Águas demite-se do cargo de selecionador de Cabo Verde" [Rui Águas resigns from post of Cape Verde national team manager]. Diário de Notícias (in Portuguese). 1 January 2016. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  19. ^ Okeleji, Oluwashina (14 February 2017). "Samson Siasia and Winfried Schafer on Rwanda coach shortlist". BBC Sport. Retrieved 15 February 2017.
  20. ^ "Rui Águas regressa ao cargo de selecionador de Cabo Verde de futebol" [Rui Águas returns to role of Cape Verde national football team manager] (in Portuguese). SAPO. 18 May 2018. Retrieved 6 March 2019.
  21. ^ Jorge da Cunha, Pedro (23 April 2015). "Rui Águas e Kelvin: eles contam como se decide um Clássico" [Rui Águas and Kelvin: they will tell you how to decide a classic] (in Portuguese). Mais Futebol. Retrieved 29 May 2015.
  22. ^ ""O Luís Pedro [Fonseca] é que tinha tudo na cabeça. Ele era o doutrinador" – recorde entrevista com Lena d'Água em 2010" ["Luís Pedro [Fonseca] was the one that had everything in his head. He was the indoctrinator" – remember interview with Lena d'Água in 2010] (in Portuguese). Blitz. 25 August 2014. Retrieved 30 May 2015.
  23. ^ "Ao lado da família, Rui Águas confessa: "Custa-me ver os meus filhos crescerem"" [Next to the family, Rui Águas confesses: "It's hard for me to see my children grow up"] (in Portuguese). Caras. 18 August 2009. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
  24. ^ Proença, Ana (25 March 2016). "Rui Águas: "Se gostava de jogar? Nem por isso!"" [Rui Águas: "Did I like playing? Not really!"]. O Jogo (in Portuguese). Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  25. ^ "Portugal – List of Topscorers". RSSSF. Retrieved 31 March 2017.
  26. ^ "Statistics – Goals scored". UEFA. Retrieved 31 March 2017.

External links[edit]