Monday, November 11, 2019

Benfica win to stay a top Portugal heading to break

Benfica Blog
Benfica traveled to the Azores for their Week 11 encounter against Santa Clara as they looked to maintain their top spot in the league going into the International break. Benfica and their rock star arrival in Sao Miguel started off on the wrong foot when Santa Clara opened the scoring 18 minutes into the game as Carlos beat out Andre Almeida to a mid cross by Rafael Ramos to head Santa Clara into the lead. Benfica's first half was one of their poorer performances of the season as they struggled to complete passes and ended the half trailing by one with their only clear scoring chance being a Ruben Dias header in additional time at the keeper.
The second half started with striker Carlos Vinicius entering the game in place of Florentino as Benfica looked to add to their attack but it was Santa Clara who would get the first scoring chance of the half at the 50th minute when Rashid's outside shot was stopped by keeper Vladchodimos. 

Benfica would then equalize just four minutes later as Pizzi's low cross went by a crowd of players ending up on the feet of substitute Vinicius who directed it into an empty net and the game was level. The next twenty minutes of the half was a back and forth affair with no real scoring threats, that was until the 78th minute when a poor clear by Santa Clara defender Cesar hit Andre Almeida and deflected to the feet of Seferovic who broke down the middle finding Pizzi to the left and the league's top scorer would make no mistake sending a low shot past keeper Marco to give Benfica the lead. The goal would energize Benfica and they looked to add to it just a minute later when Seferovic would take a hard shot just inside the box that was handled by Marco. Santa Clara though sent a chill through the Benfica faithful when Ukra's low shot from a long Rashid cross would go just inches from the far left post in additional time but that was as close as it would get as Benfica would come from behind to defeat Santa Clara 2-1. Benfica will now return to league action on November 30 after when they host Madeira club Maritimo.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

The arrival of Morato makes Conti departure likely

Benfica Blog
Benfica look set to move center back German Conti when the January transfer window opens, the 25 year old center back has yet to appear in any game this season and has only appeared in ten games for Benfica across all competitions with one goal since joining the club in the summer of 2018 from Colon for €3.5M. The acquisition this summer of 18 year old Brazilian center back Morato looks to have all but ended Conti's Benfica time. Morato has had strong performances in his appearances for Benfica in the UEFA Youth League, playing in all four games and has also appeared in three games with Benfica's B squad. Morato looks to be the heir apparent to join the main club when the departure of Ruben Dias or Ferro arrives in the future. Benfica acquired Morato from Brazilian side Sao Paulo for €6M.

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Benfica squad for upcoming Santa Clara tilt

Benfica Blog
Benfica return to league play with an upcoming tilt on the road against Azorian club Santa Clara as they look to get back to their winning ways and maintain their league lead before the International break kicks in. The game will take place today at 6pm WEST and 18 players from the list below will dress for the game.  

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Ivan Zlobin, Mile Svilar

Defenders- Ferro, Alex Grimaldo, Jardel, Tomas Tavares, Andre Almeida, Ruben Dias

Midfielders- Pizzi, Franco Cervi, Gedson Fernandes, Gabriel, Florentino, Taarabt, Chiquinho, Caio Lucas

Forwards- Seferovic, Jota, Carlos Vinicius, Raul de Tomas

Friday, November 8, 2019

Benfica field replacement under way at the Luz

Benfica Blog
Benfica are currently replacing the field at Estadio da Luz for the third time since June as they club looks for a field that will assist the club playing their brand of football more smoothly. Benfica has received complaints from the squads players and visiting clubs about the pitches poor condition this season. Manager Bruno Lage has also gone as far as saying that the poor pitch may have been a contributing factor to the clubs recent rash of injuries this season. Benfica will not play a home game at the Estadio da Luz again until November 30 so the club made the decision to have the current pitch ripped out and replaced.

Benfica manager Bruno Lage is glad to be seeing the old pitch gone and hopes the replacement works for the clubs style but more importantly Lage admits that the health of his players and of visiting players has always been his main concern.

Benfica striker Seferovic being linked to Roma

Benfica Blog
Benfica's Swiss striker Haris Seferovic is being linked with a move to Italian side Roma according to reports coming from Italy. Roma who are currently managed by Portuguese Paulo Fonseca are looking for an alternative to 33 year old Edin Dzeko and with currently loanee Nikola Kalinic failing to impress have turned their attention to the Lisbon side. The 27 year old Seferovic signed a new contract with Benfica over the summer that puts him under Benfica control until the 2024 season, the new deal also includes a €60M buy out clause. Seferovic joined Benfica on a free transfer in the summer of 2017 and won the golden boot in the Portuguese league last season with 23 goals. Seferovic has appeared in 96 games for Benfica across all competitions, scoring 38 goals while setting up 13. Benfica who have already earned an enormous amount during the summer transfer window will be looking to cash in on the big Swiss striker which may not bode well for Roma's ambitions.

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Benfica set to launch own streaming service

Benfica Blog
Benfica are set to launch their own streaming service called "Benfica Play" in December. Executive director Domingos Soares de Oliveira said that Benfica Play will be similar to Netflix and will give the clubs fans exclusive access to the clubs backstage content which would include dressing room conversations and training sessions. The streaming service will be fully dedicated to Benfica content with a goal of bringing the fans closer to the club. Soares also made it clear the Benfica Play would be separate from Benfica TV and that the streaming service would not be showing any live content. There was not any pricing for the new streaming service released and if fans from outside Portugal will be able to subscribe to the service.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Benfica fall behind early and can't recover in loss to Lyon

Benfica Blog
Benfica traveled to France to face Lyon just two weeks after earning their first victory in their Champions League campaign against the same French side but the club fell behind early and could not recover losing 3-1. This was Benfica's third loss in four contests, making their outlook for progression to the Champions League round of 16 less likely. Bruno Lage continued to tinker with his starting lineup dressing a squad with an average age of 22.7 years for the contest while regular starters Pizzi, Andre Almeida and Seferovic watched from the sidelines. Benfica President Luis Filipe Vieira's Champions League plan for the club may be to show off the academies developing players then actually trying to win contests, which is disappointing for the legion of the clubs fans across the globe who have watched smaller sides like Ajax and Monaco make runs over the last few years.

Lyon would open the scoring quick just four minutes into the game when a Dubois cross landed in between Benfica keeper Vladchodimos and his defenders, Lyon center back Andersen would get a head on it, thumping the ball into the back of the net to give Lyon the lead. Aouar would then send a cross towards goal at the twelve minute mark and as Vladchodimos rushed off his line to punch it clear he collided with center back Ferro, knocking the youngster out of the game with what appeared to be a concussion, Ferro was attended to by the medical staff and taken off on a 
stretcher, he was replaced by veteran Jardel. Lyon would then get a chance to double their lead halfway through the first half as Aouar found Dembele but the striker's touch was too heavy and Vladchodimos was there to claim the ball.

Benfica announce squad for Champions League game vs Lyon

Benfica Blog
Benfica continue their busy schedule of games as they travel to France to take on Lyon in their fourth game of the Champions League. Benfica will be looking for another win against Lyon as they try to climb out of the basement of their group and into a qualifying spot in the round of 16. The game will take place today at 8pm WEST and 18 players from the list below will dress for the game.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Ivan Zlobin, Mile Svilar

Defenders- Ferro, Alex Grimaldo, Jardel, Tomas Tavares, Andre Almeida, Ruben Dias, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Pizzi, Franco Cervi, Gedson Fernandes, Gabriel, Florentino, Taarabt, Chiquinho

Forwards- Seferovic, Jota, Carlos Vinicius, Raul de Tomas

Monday, November 4, 2019

Benfica busy run sees them move to top spot

Benfica Blog
Benfica have ended a run of three league games in seven days, gaining maximum points in all their encounters and vaulting the Lisbon club into top spot in all of Portugal two points in front of second place side FC Porto and four points in front of third place Famalicao. Benfica kicked off their busy campaign with a uninspiring 1-0 victory over Tondela on the road, were an early Ferro header helped Benfica escape with the victory. Benfica manager Bruno Lage would then make five changes to the starting eleven as Benfica would host Portimonense mid-week. The changes seemed to spark Benfica offensively as the club cruised to a 4-0 win as Carlos Vinicius earning his first league start, lead the way with a brace while Andre Almeida and Ruben Dias scored the other markers. Benfica left back Grimaldo chipped in three helpers in his man of the match performance. 
This victory along with an FC Porto draw in Madeira against Maritimo vaulted Benfica into top spot in the league. Benfica would then end their week with another home tilt this time against Rio Ave, earning another clean sheet and their eighth of the season in a 2-0 victory, Pizzi and Ruben Dias would score for the league leading Eagles. Benfica will now turn their focus to tomorrows Champions League encounter against Lyon as they look to escape the basement of their group hoping to hand the French side another loss.

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Benfica announces squad for Rio Ave game

Benfica Blog
Benfica continue their busy week of games with a home encounter against Rio Ave in Week 10, Benfica who now sit in top spot in the league after Week 9's midweek games. This weekends game will take place today at 6pm WEST and 18 players from the list below will dress for the game.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Ivan Zlobin

Defenders- Ferro, Alex Grimaldo, Jardel, Tomas Tavares, Andre Almeida, Ruben Dias, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Pizzi, Franco Cervi, Gedson Fernandes, Gabriel, Florentino, Taarabt, Samaris, Chiquinho

Forwards- Seferovic, Jota, Carlos Vinicius

Friday, November 1, 2019

Benfica and Vizela Taca game already set

Benfica Blog
Benfica's upcoming Taca de Portugal 4th round game against Vizela has been set, the game will take place November 23 at the Estadio Futebol Clube Vizela. Benfica and Vizela will meet for the first time ever in the Taca de Portugal. Benfica won their 3rd round Taca de Portugal encounter against Cova da Piedade, while Vizela defeated Casa Pia to move into the 4th round of the competition.