Jingles Pereira, Portuguese-born South African football player, Died at 77


Francisco Ivo De Jesus Pereira (2 November 1945 – 3 September 2023): A Remarkable South African Footballer

Francisco Ivo De Jesus Pereira, a distinguished footballer born on 2 November 1945, made a lasting mark in South African football history. Raised on a farm in Vereeniging, Pereira developed a love for soccer, despite facing criticism for pursuing what some labeled the “black man’s sport.” At the age of 24, he received the prestigious 1969 NFL Footballer of the Year award.

Pereira showcased his talent as a top goalscorer for Cape Town City, leading them to victory in significant tournaments like the NFL, UTC Bowl, and the Champion of Champions during 1973 and 1974. In 1979, he joined Kaizer Chiefs, becoming the third white player in the team’s history. Over time, he transitioned into a sweeper and played a vital role in the iconic Kaizer Chiefs side that achieved a remarkable quadruple win in 1981. Retiring in 1983, he left a remarkable legacy with a total of 276 goals.

Beyond his playing career, Pereira ventured into coaching, notably with Benoni United and Orlando Pirates. He also succeeded in the business world, co-owning Nova Papers (Pty Ltd) in Johannesburg.

In his personal life, Pereira faced both joy and tragedy, experiencing three marriages. He was affectionately known as “Jingles” due to a good-luck charm of carrying pennies during his early football years. He resided in Sandringham, Gauteng, prior to his passing.

On 3 September 2023, at the age of 77, Francisco Ivo De Jesus Pereira left a void in the football community. His legacy as a remarkable footballer and a prominent figure in South African football will be forever cherished.