Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Benfica and FC Porto to battle for winger Pepe

Benfica and FC Porto look set to lock horns once again but this time the clubs will be doing it off the field as both battle to acquire Eduardo Gabriel Aquino Cossa better known as Pepe from Gremio. The 23 year old winger has the interest of both clubs according to reports from Brazil but do to the current COVID-19 pandemic going across the club his agents upcoming trip to Europe to talk with potential suitors has been cancelled. Pepe has a contract with Gremio until the end of 2022 and joined the Brazilian side in April 2016 appearing in 64 games and scoring 12 goals. Gremio currently owns 70% of the players rights and is said to be asking for €20M.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Benfica have back up in mind if Vlachodimos moves on

Benfica Blog
Benfica are set if they are to move on from current number one keeper Vlachodimos as the Greek International has been linked with a summer move to Italian clubs Inter Milan or Napoli. Reports out of Turkey have Benfica linked to current Trabzonspor starter Ugurcan Cakir to take over the number one role as the Turkish International garners interest from some of Europe's bigger clubs with Arsenal, Leicester City and Tottenham all linked to the 23 year old. Cakir has appeared in 33 games across all competitions for the Turkish league leaders allowing 39 goals while maintaining 4 clean sheets. The Turkish clubs President Ahmet Agaoglu has gone on to say that he feels Cakir is one of the top three keepers in Europe and future starter for the Turkish National side as he looks to drive up the price from what is a reported €20M. Benfica came close to landing Juventus keeper Perin over this past summer for €12M along with a Seixal academy prospect but a failed physical by the Italian put an end to that move. Benfica could try the same type of approach for Cakir to lower Trabzonspor's asking price and land Vlachodimos replacement for next season.

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Newell want Lema loan move to become permanent offer players

Benfica Blog
Benfica and Argentinian club Newell Old Boys are working on an agreement to make Cristian Lema's loan move permanent and with Newell struggling to come with the €3M that Benfica are looking for, Newell are offering Benfica a deal that would involve players in return. Newell are said to be offering Benfica a choice of 19 year old forward Tobias Donsati, 20 year old midfielder Anibal Moreno and 22 year old midfielder Jeronimo Cacciabue to clinch the permanent move. Lema joined Benfica from Belgrano in the summer of 2018 on a free transfer but only appeared in two games for the Eagles before loan spells at Penarol and this past season with Newell. Lema has appeared in 22 games for Newell and has scored 4 goals of the three players being offered Cacciabue is said to be the most ready to join the main club while Moreno is the player with the most promise. Benfica and Newell will continue to work on coming to an agreement until June 30 when Lema's loan move will end and he will return to Benfica.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Benfica linked to Tigres attacking midfielder

Benfica Blog
Benfica have been linked to another summer improvement according to reports out of Portugal and this time it is Tigres attacking midfielder Leonardo Fernandez who is currently on loan with another Mexican side Toluca. The 21 year old Uruguayan joined Tigres in the summer of 2019 from CA Fenix but has yet to make an appearance with Tigres. Fernandez has appeared in 11 games for Toluca across all competitions, scoring eight times while setting up three goals. The under 23 international is the owner of a left foot that has been making waves in Mexico and plays a coveted position by Benfica which is the #8 role. Tigres is looking for €15M to part with Fernandez's services, a sum that Benfica are close to acquiring from West Brom for the sale of  Filip Krovinovic. Jorge Mendes is said to be leading the negotiations on Benfica's behalf and was set to meet with Fernandez's agent Jorge Chijane but that meeting had to be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Benfica's should look within league for central defender

Benfica Blog
Benfica could find what they are looking for right in their own backyard when it comes to strengthening the center back spot for the club this off season. Benfica will more then likely see Ruben Dias depart and with reports coming from both Portugal and Spain, the club could also see the departure of Ferro and captain Jardel when all is said and done. Benfica have promising youngster Morato to look forward to in the future but at the tender age of 18, the young Brazilian defender is still too green to take over a regular role with the main squad. Benfica have also been linked to 23 year old Freiburg defender Robin Koch who could come with a €20M price tag and be more then an adequate starter with the club but the squad would still be short at least two defenders that they could rely on to play regular minutes.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Manchester United have Benfica's Pizzi on short list

Benfica Blog
Benfica midfielder Pizzi has had his name mentioned on the short list of Manchester United as a potential summer target if United are to miss out on their main target Jadon Sancho. The 30 year old Pizzi has been one of the best players in the Portuguese League the past few seasons and currently sits second behind teammate Vinicius for the leagues golden boot this year. Pizzi who joined Benfica in the summer of 2013 become a main stay with the club during the 2014/15 season after a season loan at Espanyol and has appeared in 270 games with the club across all competitions, scoring 72 goals and adding 80 assists. A move to United would see Pizzi join fellow Portuguese players Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Dalot at the club and give United two of the best players in the Portuguese League over the past few seasons within a 6 month span after landing Fernandes in January. Pizzi is signed with Benfica until the summer of 2023 and has a current buy out clause of €60M. Benfica should not expect United to get close to that buy out due to Pizzi's age but the club would more then likely be open to moving their best player for half that price if you United were to get that high.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Benfica and FC Porto both interested in Granada keeper

Benfica Blog
Benfica and FC Porto are both interested in landing Granada's Portuguese keeper Rui Silva for next season according to reports coming from Portugal. The 26 year old has been one of the better keepers in La Liga this season and currently sits third in total shot stops while maintaining ten clean sheets for the mid table club. Silva's low buy out clause of €15M will make it difficult for the Spanish side to retain his services beyond this season. Silva arrived at Granada during the winter transfer window of 2017 for a modest €1.5M from Madeira club Nacional and became the starter last season helping the club earn promotion to La Liga  while being voted the best keeper in the second division. Benfica have been looking for a keeper to push current number one Vlachodimos since last summer and Silva's form and low cost has moved him onto the clubs summer acquisition list. Benfica though will not only have Portuguese rivals FC Porto to battle for Silva's signature but Spanish side Real Betis and a couple of English Premier clubs have also been linked to acquiring the Portuguese keeper. Silva's final decision could be swayed in Benfica's favour if they were to land a spot in next seasons Champions League but that will remain unknown until the league restarts amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Friday, March 20, 2020

West Brom ready to make bid for Benfica's Krovinovic

West Brom are ready to discuss a permanent move with Benfica for attacking midfielder Filip Krovinovic who has spent this season as a key member of West Brom's run into the top two of England's second division and likely promotion to the Premiership next season once things get back to normal amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Krovinovic joined Benfica in the summer of 2017 from Rio Ave for €3.5M and appeared in 28 games with Benfica across all competitions before being loaned out this summer to West Brom. Krovinovic looks to have found a squad that he can play regularly and has appeared in 34 games this season for the Baggies across all competitions scoring twice and providing four helpers. The loan move between both clubs did not include an option to buy as part of the agreement but Benfica could be looking for €15M-€20M from West Brom to make the move permanent and with West Brom set to gain around €100M from television rights with a promotion an agreement should not be hard to come by for the the 24 year old Croatian.


Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Benfica should consider Joao Cancelo loan move

Benfica Blog
Benfica should already be looking on how to bolster their squad for next season and one position that the club needs to strengthen is the right back spot. Benfica will continue to sell assets and one particular European club that has been a regular in the stands scouting the club is Manchester City, the English club has been suspended from European play for the next two years by UEFA and should have an abundance of players available to other clubs, one of these such players could be Portuguese right back Joao Cancelo.
Benfica Blog 
Benfica who currently have an often injured Andre Almeida and not yet ready youngster Tomas Tavares in the right back spot would receive an immediate upgrade with a loan acquisition of its former Seixal academy player. Benfica should ask to include Cancelo on any deal the two clubs would make for a Man City linked player like Ruben Dias and the club could make sure that City pay a substantial amount of Cancelo's £4.16M annual salary to fit within the clubs budget.



Monday, March 16, 2020

Benfica deciding to bring back Diogo Goncalves

Benfica Blog
Benfica are currently working on making a decision if they will bring back winger Diogo Goncalves to the fold after his loan spell ends at Famalicao in the summer. Goncalves who last appeared in action with Benfica on February 17, 2018 during a league game against Boavista is a graduate from Benfica's famous Seixal academy. The 23 year old had struggled to find playing time the last few years with the Eagles and during a loan spell last season at Nottingham Forest but looks to have matured this season with Famalicao. Goncalves has appeared in 25 games across all competitions, scoring four goals while adding eight helpers and is a regular in the clubs starting eleven. Benfica and Famalicao earlier this season had discussed Goncalves remaining permanently with the northern Portuguese side with Benfica retaining 50% of the players rights going forward but Benfica look to have had a change of heart in 2020 amid its current struggles. Goncalves has been a regular member of Portugal's youth squads and can play both right and left wing for the club.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Benfica close official stores and restaurant

Benfica Blog
Benfica have announced the closing of its Official stores and their restaurant at the Estadio da Luz indefinitely due to COVID-19 also known as the corona virus as a way of preventing the spread of the virus. The closures are effective as of today as the club deals with the spread of the virus through Portugal and the world. Benfica have not been in action since a draw last Saturday against Setubal and the club along with the rest of the world awaits to get back to normal everyday life. Benfica have provided their players with a diet and training regiment while the club is in hiatus and have asked players to remain isolated at home and to leave in only causes of emergency. The club will continue to monitor players through an electronic bracelet as they do during the season. Benfica are also going through the process of refunding purchasers of tickets to this weekends Tondela game and will move on others on a game to game basis.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Benfica season put on hold due to COVID-19

Benfica Blog
Benfica's run for the Portuguese League title has been put on hold as the Portuguese League has suspended play due to COVID-19. The league has decided that Week 25's games which earlier in the week were set to be played behind closed doors would be better off to not take place at all with pressure coming from the players syndicate to cancel these games. The League decided that it would be in the best interest of the fans and players to suspend plan indefinitely to avoid the spread of the virus from large crowd gatherings. Portugal currently have 78 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and have not suffered any deaths at this time with one of the infected having completed a full recovery.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Benfica make first signing of the summer from Brazil

Benfica Blog
Benfica have acquired their first player for next season landing Corinthians midfielder Pedrinho for a reported €20M and signing the 21 year old for five seasons while adding a €120M buy out clause to the players contract. Benfica have been linked with Pedrinho since the winter transfer market but have now only made the move official announcing the players signing earlier today.
 https://s2.glbimg.com/Sx9JJswRNsZ3TqdOZahLvmV7mas=/0x0:640x360/984x0/smart/filters:strip_icc()/i.s3.glbimg.com/v1/AUTH_bc8228b6673f488aa253bbcb03c80ec5/internal_photos/bs/2020/c/D/5w8ZqmTZOdl5gxRmD1gg/pedrinho-7-thumbnail.jpg
Pedrinho has been a member of Brazilian side Corinthians since the age of 14 and joined the main squad in early 2017, he has appeared in 92 games across all competitions scoring eight goals while adding another eight assists. Pedrinho will return to Sao Paulo and compete with Corinthians in the Brazilian Serie A until the transfer window re-opens in Portugal during the summer months.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Benfica hit record €104.2M profit in first six months

Benfica Blog
Benfica have released record profits for the first half of the 2019/20 financial year, the current Portuguese league champions earned €104.2M in the first six months of the fiscal year. The figures represent a 639.8% increase from the same period last year with Joao Felix's record smashing summer transfer a big part of the profits. This is the sixth consecutive year that Benfica have recorded a profit in the first six months of the fiscal year with the club bringing in a revenue of €244.3M from July 1/19 to December 31/19, in that same period the clubs operating income also increased by 8.8% from the same time last year to €101.9M. Benfica's current net debt now stands at €45.8M which the club has decreased by a whopping €189.5M since the summer of 2016. These latest figures should see the club once again exceed the €300M mark in revenue for the second consecutive year when the fiscal year ends on June 30, 2020.

Monday, March 9, 2020

Benfica interested in Famalicao young midfielder

Benfica Blog
Benfica are being linked with Famalicao midfielder Gustavo Assuncao as one of their first summer transfer acquisitions. The 19 year old defensive midfielder joined Famalicao from Atletico Madrid's under 19 squad on a free transfer in July of 2019 and has appeared in 29 games across all competitions chipping in one assist. Benfica who acquired Julian Weigl during the past transfer window, would be adding to a place of strength with Seixal academy product Florentino Luis and Greek international Samaris all able to play in the defensive midfield role. Benfica may be better suited to look at landing a central defender or right back which are two positions that the club needs to reinforce. The move for Assuncao may just be a future move for Benfica who could loan Assuncao out right away to gain experience while owning the players rights for any potential sale or to join the club as a replacement once other players are sold.

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Will the real Benfica please stand up

Benfica Blog
Benfica went down to Setubal for Week 24 action and when the final whistle blew, the club left with another 1-1 draw and more questions then answers as they dropped points once again in league play. Benfica who have just one victory across all competitions in their last eight games, look like a club that is out of ideas while manager Bruno Lage who just over a year ago was the clubs savior and to some the greatest manager ever seems to have lost his creativity to get this club going as he searches for answers with the season on the line. Benfica for the second week in a row escaped with a draw thanks to Pizzi penalty conversation but the midfielder would later go on to miss another from the spot, his second miss in as many weeks costing the club a chance at all three points. Striker Carlos Vinicius has also been bitten with the bug scoring just one goal in his last seven competitive games. Benfica luckily stayed within a point of league leaders FC Porto who failed to capitalize and move up by three points drawing themselves at home against Rio Ave. What has happened to the club who coming into February was on a 16 game unbeaten run across all competitions and held a seven point lead atop Portugal? Joao Felix has been gone all season but the club has been missing his presence having not found an adequate replacement. 



Saturday, March 7, 2020

Benfica roster for Setubal match

Benfica Blog
Benfica's tail spin has finally cost them top spot after another poor outing against Morereinse in Week 23, the Eagles travel to Setubal hoping to get their season and title hopes back on trap. Benfica will play Setubal today at 6pm WEST and they will dress 18 players from the list below.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Mile Svilar

Defenders- Tomas Tavares, Alex Grimaldo, Ruben Dias, Ferro, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Rafa Silva, Samaris, Florentino, Julian Weigl

Forwards- Carlos Vinicius, Jota, Dyego Sousa

Friday, March 6, 2020

Pizzi has moved into third in all time goal scorers at new Luz

Benfica Blog
Benfica is struggling along in the second half of the season but one player that has continued to excel in this time of sorrow for the club and its fans is recently named Benfica footballer of the year Pizzi. The 30 year old accepted the award as the clubs best player at Benfica's recent gala on Wednesday night, Pizzi has scored 25 goals this season and assisted on 13 others across all competitions and is slowly climbing the charts of all time goal scorers at the "New" Estadio da Luz. Pizzi has scored 44 goals at his home stadium and currently sits third all time with only Oscar Cardozo's 105 goals and Jonas' 92 goals ahead of him. The "New" Luz has been the clubs home stadium since opening in October 2003 as the centerpiece of newly built and renovated stadiums for Euro 2004. Pizzi who has been a member of Benfica since the summer of 2013 when the club acquired him from Atletico Madrid has surpassed the likes of Simao, Nuno Gomes, Lima and Salvio to move into the third all time spot. Benfica are hoping the Pizzi's form will rub off on the squad as they look to right the ship in their run for the Portuguese League title.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Portuguese tax officials raid the offices of Benfica

Benfica Blog
According to reports coming from Portuguese newspapers, tax officials in Portugal have raided the offices of Benfica as part of an investigation into tax evasion not only by the Lisbon club but raids have also happened to head offices of FC Porto, Sporting, Braga, Guimaraes, Maritimo and Portimonense. Police and tax inspectors carried out a series of raids Wednesday morning as part of the operation which has been billed in Portugal as "Offside". The investigation is going back to 2015 and today's raid involved 180 police officers and 101 tax officials. Benfica have confirmed that the raids took place and are fully ready to co-operate with authorities as needed. Portuguese tax officials are said to be combing through transfers of players as prosecutors look for any proof that money was hidden which could lead to charges that include tax fraud and money laundering.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Benfica inflict own wounds and drop from top spot

Benfica Blog
Benfica have dropped points in league action once again this time against Moreirense and have finally cost themselves top spot in the Portuguese League. Benfica who only a month ago had a seven point lead atop the Portuguese League have only won one league game in their last four, acquiring four total points in that span on their way to falling out of first place to their only rivals for the title FC Porto by one point. Benfica have struggled to finish of late and this game was no different with the club missing a host of chances to take the lead, the club had Pizzi miss two opportunities from the penalty spot and had a Rafa Silva goal called back after a VAR review that spotted a Pizzi handball before the ball landed at Rafa's feet.

Benfica ended up lucky to even earn a draw in the encounter with the goal to equalize coming in additional time. Benfica's winter transfer window continues to baffle fans more and more as this poor run continues, the lack of picking up an experienced central defender has caused the club to use a less then 100% Ferro regularly in the center of the defense while youngster Tomas Tavares continues to show that he is not ready for a regular role in place of injured Andre Almeida as he continues to be caught out of position, while adding little to the attack in the right back position. 

Monday, March 2, 2020

Benfica roster for Moreirene encounter

Benfica continue their fight for the league title with a home game in Week 23 against Moreirense. After a disappointing exit during the week to Shakhtar in the Europa League round of 32. Benfica look to get back on track with a victory at the Estadio da Luz. Benfica will play Moreirense today at 8:45pm WEST and they will dress 18 players from the list below.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Mile Svilar

Defenders- Tomas Tavares, Alex Grimaldo, Ruben Dias, Ferro, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Rafa Silva, Samaris, Florentino, Julian Weigl, David Tavares

Forwards- Carlos Vinicius, Jota, Dyego Sousa

Sunday, March 1, 2020

Bruno Lage says Seferovic out of lineup

Benfica Blog
Benfica manager Bruno Lage has stated that last seasons leading scorer Haris Seferovic will not be an option when Benfica takes on Moreirense tomorrow in league action. Lage did not divulge if Seferovic had picked up an injury in the clubs recent Europa League loss to Shakhtar or through training when he made the announcement. Seferovic has struggled this season in the absence of Joao Felix who was sold during the summer for a record transfer to Spanish club Atletico Madrid. The emergence of striker Carlos Vinicius has cut into Seferovic's playing time and the Swiss striker has scored only six goals all season across all competitions a far cry from last seasons ending 27. The recent acquisition of striker Dyego Sousa on loan during the winter transfer window looks to have knocked Seferovic down another peg on the striker list if the absence is not do to any type of injury. Lage was vague when questioned about the absence of Seferovic from the squads selection. The omission comes as a blow to the current striking option of the Swiss national side as Benfica are set to take on Moreirense tomorrow at the Luz as their quest for the Portuguese League title continues.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Benfica draw not enough to advance in Europa League

Benfica Blog
Benfica fought tooth and nail but could just not get to the round of 16 in the Europa League with a draw on this disastrous night for Portuguese football. Benfica opened the scoring just nine minutes into the encounter bringing the Estadio da Luz fans to their feet when Pizzi would find the far right corner giving Benfica advantage based on away goals due to their 2-1 defeat to Shakhtar in the first leg. That advantage would last barely three minutes with a Ruben Dias own goal bringing the game level. The central defender would make amends scoring nine minutes before the half to give Benfica the 2-1 lead and having the game set to go into additional extra time if it remained that way. Rafa Silva would then take advantage of a Shakhtar back end error to give Benfica a 3-1 lead just two minutes into the second half and once again the club had the advantage to move into the round of 16 but again Benfica failed to hold this advantage for very long as just four minutes later Shakhtar would bring the game to within one and give the Ukrainian side advantage on away goals. Shakhtar would then tie the game up at 3-3 with a goal at the 71st minute mark which basically ended the hopes of the Lisbon club advancing. Benfica would be eliminated 5-4 on aggregate over two legs in what was a horrible Europa League campaign for Portuguese Football. Benfica would be joined by FC Porto, Sporting and Braga at the exit door as Portugal's clubs all crashed out of the tournament which have many questioning the state of skill and talent currently in the league.

Benfica squad for second leg encounter against Shakhtar

Benfica Blog
Benfica go into their second leg showdown against Ukraine side Shakhtar Donetsk at the Estadio da Luz coming off their first victory in four games and looking to avenge their 2-1 first leg loss last week. Benfica need a victory and a goal to have any chance of moving into the round of 16 and are hoping to take the momentum of their latest victory to heart. Benfica play Shakhtar today at 8pm WEST and they will dress 18 players from the list below.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Mile Svilar

Defenders- Tomas Tavares, Alex Grimaldo, Ruben Dias, Ferro, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Rafa Silva, Samaris, Florentino, Julian Weigl, David Tavares

Forwards- Carlos Vinicius, Seferovic, Jota, Dyego Sousa

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Benfica Player Profile: Nuno Gomes

Benfica Blog

Nuno Gomes (Striker)

Years Active (1994-2014)

Benfica Career (1997-2000) (2002-2011)

Born: July 5, 1976 (43 years old)

Benfica Blog
Nuno Gomes
Nuno Gomes started his playing career with Benfica in 1997 after making the move from Boavista where he was a member of the clubs youth teams since 1997. Nuno Gomes spent three seasons at Benfica scoring over 60 goals in over 100 club appearances before moving to Italian side Fiorentina in 2000 for €17M. Gomes returned to Benfica in 2002 on a free transfer after Fiorentina were relegated in Italy.


Gomes return to Benfica did not go as well at the start as his first with the striker battling a series of injuries from 2002 to 2005 and appearing in less then 70 games. Gomes though was a member of the clubs league winning squad in 2004/05 their first league championship in over 10 years. Gomes would add an additional six trophies during his time with Benfica while scoring 166 goals in 399 games across all competitions.

Gomes International career was just as successful being named to the Euro 2000 starting eleven all star squad and scoring 29 goals during his time as a member of the senior side to sit fifth all time. Gomes called it a career in 2013 after future stops at Braga (2011-12) and Blackburn (2012-13) and returned to Benfica as a director of the clubs academy before parting ways in 2017.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Benfica snap winless skid to regain top spot

Benfica Blog
Benfica finally snap a four game winless skid across all competitions dating back to February 4ths Taca de Portugal semi-final game with a narrow 1-0 victory over Gil Vicente in Week 22 action. The victory moves Benfica back into top spot leaping over FC Porto and remaining one point ahead of their nearest and only rival to the title this season. Benfica got an early goal from Carlos Vinicius who headed home a Taarabt cross for his league leading 15th goal of the season at the 15 minute mark. The lead was almost surrendered two minutes later but Gil Vicente's Baraye missed a golden opportunity to equalize. Gil Vicente was the lively of the two clubs for most of the middle part of the half and if not for some stellar goalkeeping by Vlachodimos Benfica's lead would have vanished. Carlos Vinicius would then score his second of the game but his goal would not stand and was called back offside at the 35th minute. Then just before the half Vinicius' out reached leg would not get to the low cross placed across the crease by defender Ruben Dias and Benfica went into the half with a 1-0 lead. Benfica's Taarabt almost doubled the clubs lead at the 66th minute mark but his left footed shot would clang off the crossbar and out. Vlachodimos would come up with one more big save when he stopped a close range shot by Hugo Vieira at the 73rd minute, Gil Vicente's last real threat of the game as Benfica held firm for the 1-0 victory. Benfica will now turn their attention to Thursdays second leg Europa League encounter against Shakthar Donetsk at home as the club looks to overturn a 2-1 first leg loss.

Benfica join Porto in race to land Tondela right back

Benfica Blog
Benfica have added their name along with rivals FC Porto in the chase to land Tondela right back Fahd Moufi. The 23 year old who's current contract expires on June 30 not only has the Portuguese giants interested in his services, with clubs Nantes, Real Betis and Sevilla also in the picture. It's been reported that Porto have already had their first offer to sign Moufi rejected by the French born right back who has been a member of Tondela since the 2017/18 season. Moufi who currently earns €70,000 per season is looking for a substantial raise increase from any potential buyer that is looking to land his services for next season. Moufi has appeared in 40 games across all competitions with Tondela, scoring once and adding one assist but 19 of Moufi's Tondela games have come during this current season. Benfica are interested in adding some insurance to the right back position with current starter Andre Almeida inching closer to 30 years of age and current back up Tomas Tavares yet to hit 19 years of age.

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Benfica squad for Gil Vicente road game

Benfica Blog
Benfica for the first time in 2020 are currently not in top spot in Portugal and need a victory tomorrow at Barcelos to regain it from FC Porto. Benfica are currently on a four game winless run across all competitions and with a midweek Europa League game on the horizon the club will look for a confidence building win in Week 22 action. Benfica play Gil Vicente tomorrow at 7:30pm WEST and they will dress 18 players from the list below.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Ivan Zlobin

Defenders- Tomas Tavares, Alex Grimaldo, Ruben Dias, Ferro, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Rafa Silva, Samaris, Florentino, Julian Weigl

Forwards- Carlos Vinicius, Seferovic, Jota, Dyego Sousa

Friday, February 21, 2020

Benfica need to get back to the basics

Benfica Blog
Benfica are now winless in their last four games across all competitions for the first time in the Bruno Lage era and will need to get out of Week 22 with victory to maintain their league lead and to rebuild their confidence heading into the second leg of Europa League action. Benfica started the month on a high with a seven point league atop the Portuguese Liga while on a 17 game undefeated run across all competitions. Benfica's last loss happened in Champions League play to Lyon on November 5th but boy what a difference two weeks can make. Benfica now sit atop Portugal with just a one point lead over second place FC Porto after losing their last two league games and need a victory at home for a chance to advance in Europa League play after losing the first leg on the road to Shakhtar earlier this week. Benfica look like a team out of ideas and a club that is out of gas and needing a spark. Bruno Lage needs to rest players this weekend and also requires a victory but getting back to the basics might just be what the club needs.

 
Lage should look at giving over used players like Pizzi and Grimaldo a rest this weekend against Gil Vicente and start youngster Nuno Tavares and Chiquinho in their places. Lage should also reinsert Samaris into the starting eleven as the Greek International would give the club the spark from his passionate play, a spark that the club currently lacks.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Benfica escape Ukraine with narrow loss against Shakhtar

Benfica Blog
In frigid temperatures in Donetsk, Benfica escaped a poor first half showing to leave Ukraine with a narrow 2-1 loss and earning the all important away goal as they travel home to face Shakhtar next week at the Estadio da Luz needing only a low scoring victory to advance into the Europa League round of 16. Shakhtar who had not played a competitive game after a long winter break since December 14 was the livelier of the two clubs as Benfica battled temperatures hovering around zero celsius during the game. Shakhtar got the first good scoring chance at the 20 minute mark but Junior Moraes had his close range shot turned aside by Benfica keeper Vlachodimos. Shakhtar then thought they had opened the scoring at the 22nd minute mark but a Marlos goal was rightly ruled off side by VAR. Shakhtar continued the onslaught and just two minues later Vlachodimos came up big once again turning aside a Kovalenko howitzer as Benfica remained pinned back for most of the half. Pizzi would get Benfica's best chance of the first half sending a shot just wide of the post as the half neared but Benfica went into halftime lucky to not be down by a pair of goals and without registering a shot on target during the half. 


The second half started much the same as the first with Shakhtar pressing and at the 50th minute Ismaily ringed one of the far post as the game remained scoreless. Alan Patrick would finally break the deadlock at the 56th minute finishing off a pretty tic tac toe passing play to give Shakhtar a much deserved 1-0 lead but Benfica would finally get a break and were awarded a penalty on a strange call that saw a Tavares goal called back after Cervi was brought down in the box but instead of playing advantage and letting the goal stand the Scottish referee overturned the goal siting an offside and Pizzi would then convert from the spot bringing the game level 1-1 at the 66 minute mark. Ruben Dias would then lose a battle for the ball just outside the box to Taison and Kovalenko would make him pay finishing off a pretty pass by Junior Morais as Shakhtar regained their lead just five minutes after losing it. Grimaldo would then whip a shot on goal that was turned aside by Shakhtar keeper Pyatov as Benfica looked for the equalizer but that would by as close as they got losing 2-1 to Shakhtar and going home to the Estadio da Luz for the second leg next week needing a victory to have any chance of advancing to the round of 16.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Benfica continue in talks to land Freiburg defender

Benfica Blog
Benfica continue in their talks with German side Freiburg in regards to landing central defender Robin Koch. The clubs spoke originally during the winter transfer window but were unable to come to an agreement for the 23 year old but with Benfica likely to lose current starting defender Ruben Dias during the summer months the club is looking to shore up a key position. The Eagles feel that Koch is the perfect replacement for Dias but have currently balked at Freiburg's €20M price tag with Benfica willing to go as high as €15M for the German nationals services. Koch joined Freiburg in the summer of 2017 from Kaiserlautern and has appeared in 24 games across all competitions this season scoring once. Koch is also versatile and can be used as a defensive central midfielder starting six of this seasons 24 games in that role. Benfica are hoping an agreement between the clubs can be done quickly with other European clubs also looking at Koch's services.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Benfica release squad for Europa League game against Shakhtar

Benfica Blog
Benfica head to the Ukraine playing their worse soccer since Bruno Lage took over at the club in the managerial role last January as the club looks to snap a three games winless streak that has seen the club go from a comfortable seven point lead in the league to just one point. Benfica are hoping to get off on the right foot as their Europa League campaign gets under way in the round of 32. Benfica play Shakhtar on Thursday at 5:55pm WEST and they will dress 18 players from the list below.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Ivan Zlobin, Mile Svilar

Defenders- Tomas Tavares, Alex Grimaldo, Ruben Dias, Ferro, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Rafa Silva, Samaris, Florentino, Davis Tavares

Forwards- Carlos Vinicius, Seferovic, Jota, Dyego Sousa

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Benfica stumble again in league play at home to Braga

Benfica Blog
Benfica's poor form continues in a gut wrenching 1-0 loss at the Estadio da Luz to Braga. Benfica who have now lost two straight league games and are winless in three games for the first time under Bruno Lage when we count their midweek Taca de Portugal game, have turned a potential ten point league lead atop Portugal just last week to a potential one point league lead depending on the result of today's FC Porto-Guimaraes clash. Braga under new manager and former Benfica player Ruben Amorim walked into Lisbon and did something that had not been completed in 65 years in league play and that was earn a victory away from home sending Benfica into crisis mode. 



Saturday, February 15, 2020

Benfica squad for Braga tilt

Benfica Blog
Benfica look to snap a two game winless streak as they get set to host Braga at the Estadio da Luz later today. Benfica who drew at Famalicao in Taca de Portugal action after losing to FC Porto in the Classico in Week 20 are hoping to get back to their winning ways and avoid Bruno Lage's first ever three game winless streak since he took over at the club. Benfica play Braga today at 6pm WEST and they will dress 18 players from the list below.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Ivan Zlobin

Defenders- Tomas Tavares, Alex Grimaldo, Ruben Dias, Ferro, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Rafa Silva, Samaris, Florentino, Julian Weigl

Forwards- Carlos Vinicius, Seferovic, Jota, Dyego Sousa

Friday, February 14, 2020

Benfica want to increase Vinicius buy out clause

Benfica Blog
Benfica are ready to reward striker Carlos Vinicius for his superb season with the club with a new contract, the new contract would increase Vinicius salary and more importantly increase his current buy out clause from €100M to €120M as they look to protect their investment from some of Europe's bigger clubs. Vinicius who joined the club in the summer from Napoli for €17M was an after though with the club, opening the season as the clubs third option in the striker position but poor form by last seasons leading scorer Haris Seferovic and highly regarded new acquisition and recently departed Raul de Tomas gave Vinicius the opportunity to more playing time and the striker did not disappoint. Vinicius has scored 19 goals in 30 games across all competitions while setting up another 12 goals in his debut season with Benfica.
Benfica Blog
Vincius is currently the leading scorer in the Portuguese League with 14 goals and Benfica know that some of Europe's bigger clubs have taken notice of the season that the 24 year old is having. One of the clubs that has been most linked with an acquisition of Vinicius in the summer is current defending Champions League winners Liverpool, the Reds are said to be looking at Vinicius as a potential replacement for current striker Roberto Firmino who could be on his way out after the season. Benfica are aware that it will be difficult to hang onto Vinicius if he continues his fine form but the club would be ready to cash in on another potential €100M+ sale for the second summer in a row.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Gabriel out of action for indefinite period of time

Benfica Blog
Benfica announced yesterday that midfielder Gabriel will miss an indefinite amount of time and possibly the rest of the season due to a vision related issue as Gabriel has been diagnosed with sixth nerve palsy which is a disorder associated with the dysfunction of the cranial nerve which is responsible for causing contraction of the lateral rectus muscle to abduct (movement of the eye causing double vision). Gabriel informed the club the day after the Famalicao first leg Taca de Portugal encounter that he was having problems with the vision of his left eye. The club immediately began to run tests which are now complete and have ruled out more serious concerns but the players timeline to return to action is unknown as the club looks to avoid any additional risks by rushing Gabriel back into regular game action. Gabriel continues to attend club practices and do the physical work that he deems appropriate. This is the third time that the midfielder has been on the injured list since joining the club last summer having already suffered a knee injury last season and a ligament rupture earlier this season. Benfica will lean to Julian Weigl, Florentino, Samaris and Taarabt in the middle of the field with Gabriel's absence.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Benfica to meet FC Porto in Taca de Portugal Final

Benfica Blog
Benfica and FC Porto will meet in this seasons Taca de Portugal Final on May 24, 2020 at the Jamor after both clubs got past their semi-final opponents this week to set up one more Classico this season and their first meeting in the Taca de Portugal Final since 2003-04 in which Benfica defeated FC Porto 2-1 in additional extra time. Benfica moved into the finals for the first time since 2017 with a 3-2 win and 1-1 draw versus Famalicao over two legs, while FC Porto won 3-0 and drew 1-1 against second division club Academico Viseu. FC Porto will be returning to Taca de Portugal Final hoping to make amends for last seasons penalty shootout loss to Sporting. Benfica and FC Porto will be facing off in the Taca de Portugal Final for the eleventh time in the clubs histories with Benfica holding the edge over Porto by winning nine of the ten previous encounters. Benfica will be looking to make amends for the two regular season losses they have suffered to FC Porto as both clubs battle for the Portuguese League crown once again this year.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Benfica squad set for second leg Taca game against Famalicao

Benfica Blog
Benfica are set for their second leg Taca de Portugal encounter against Famalicao after scratching out a victory in additional time 3-2 in the first leg. Benfica are coming off their first loss to a Portuguese club since August of 2019 after losing in the Classico to rivals FC Porto over the weekend and Benfica will need to have better form if they are to advance to the Taca de Portugal Finals. Benfica play Famalicao today at 8:45pm WEST and they will dress 18 players from the list below.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Ivan Zlobin

Defenders- Tomas Tavares, Alex Grimaldo, Ruben Dias, Ferro, Nuno Tavares

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Rafa Silva, Samaris, Florentino, Julian Weigl

Forwards- Carlos Vinicius, Seferovic, Jota, Dyego Sousa

Monday, February 10, 2020

Benfica already cash in bonus on Raul de Tomas

Benfica Blog
Benfica have already earned a cash bonus on this winters sale of striker Raul de Tomas to Espanyol as the club will receive an additional €500,000 more on top of the €20M sale after the striker scored his fifth goal for Espanyol in only five appearances. De Tomas who was a complete bust in his short time at Benfica scored only three times in 18 appearances across all competitions and did not score once for the club in league play. De Tomas had joined Benfica in the summer of 2019 from Real Madrid for €20M to much fan fare as the heir apparent to replace a retiring Jonas but things did not work that way for De Tomas or the club and he was sold just six months after joining the Lisbon side. Benfica can now say that they have made a profit on the De Tomas sale with a potential to add another €1.5M in bonuses.

Benfica ask Portuguese Football Federation and Liga for foreign referees

Benfica Blog
Benfica officials are furious with the officiating that they feel cost the club the game in their O Classico encounter against FC Porto over the weekend. Benfica feel the officiating crew of Artur Soares Dias made several errors during the game that lead to defeat and are asking the Portuguese Football Federation and Liga Portugal for foreign referees to officiate both clubs league games until the end of the season. Benfica also feel that VAR made an error on the penalty call against Ferro in the first half of the game that resulted in Porto taking a 2-1 lead. Benfica feel that five moments in particular during the game effected the result of the game:

1- At the 4 minute mark an aggressive play by Porto winger Marega against Taarabt which cost the player to lose teeth passed completely unscathed.

2- The club felt that the yellow card handed to Julian Weigl at the 30 minute mark should not have been given as the player failed to touch the Porto player who dove. Benfica also felt that the yellow cards given to almost all of the clubs midfielders in the first half which included Pizzi and Taarabt effected the clubs performance while only one Porto midfielder was carded in the half.

3- Benfica claim that the penalty awarded was unfair and images show that Tiquinho pushed Ferro away causing the player to fall forward with arms out causing the ball to be headed by the Porto striker into the players arm.



Sunday, February 9, 2020

Benfica drop Classico with poor first half

Benfica Blog
Benfica drop points in the O Classico once again this season losing for the second time this campaign with both of those loses coming to rivals FC Porto. Benfica came into the game ready to take a commanding lead atop Portugal as a victory would have the Encarnados up by ten points on second place Porto but a poor first half would see their advantage actually shrink to four points and turn this season back into a race for the Portuguese title.

Bruno Lage decided to make one change to Week 19's winning squad with the reintroduction of Chiquinho into the starting eleven at the secondary striker position. The inclusion came at the expense of Franco Cervi, as Rafa would drop from playing alongside Carlos Vinicius into the Argentinian midfielders left spot. This poor decision by Lage would come back to haunt the club with all of Porto's goals created down the left side of the field with Jesus Corona and Marega pushing play.


The lack of defensive help from Cervi down the left side of the field for Grimaldo was exactly what was missing in their first half encounter and Lage seems to not have learned from this error which would not be the only tactic he would get wrong in this encounter. Benfica would come out flat to start the first half and FC Porto almost opened the scoring when a Luis Diaz cross would be sent just wide of the left post from a Pepe header just seven minutes into the game.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Benfica squad set for O Classico encounter

Benfica Blog
Benfica are set for their biggest game of the season as they get set to face FC Porto in "O Classico" at Porto's Estadio do Dragao. Benfica will look to open up a ten point lead over the second place northern club as the to combatants lock horns. Benfica will play FC Porto today at 8:30pm WEST and they will dress 18 players from the list below.

Keepers- Vlachodimos, Ivan Zlobin

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

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Rafa Silva, Julian Weigl, Florentino, Samaris

Forwards- Carlos Vinicius, Seferovic, Jota, Dyego Sousa

Friday, February 7, 2020

Benfica with eyes on Montenegro midfielder

Benfica Blog
Benfica scouts were in Algarve recently watching a friendly between Swedish club Norrkoping and Danish side Brondby on January 31 with their eyes set on Montenegro International Sead Haksabanovic. The 20 year old midfielder who is on loan from West Ham with the Swedish side until the summer joined the Hammers from Halmstad in 2017. Haksabanovic who regularly plays the left midfield spot that is currently occupied by Rafa Silva and Franco Cervi appeared in 34 games across all competitions for Norrkoping scoring eight goals and setting up another eight. The acquisition of Haksabanovic could mean Franco Cervi's time with the club is over as he has been linked with a return back to his native Argentina to join Boca Juniors. Mexican side Tigres has also revealed that they will be in the race to land Cervi once the transfer window re-opens in the summer and Benfica's interest in Haksabanovic makes sense with the potential departure of the hard working Cervi.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Jardel set to miss two months due to injury

Benfica Blog
Benfica have released information on the extent of the injury suffered to captain and central defender Jardel during the clubs Taca de Portugal semi-final game against Famalicao. Jardel suffered an injury in the first half of the game to his internal lateral ligament of his right knee and the injury will see him unavailable to the club for the next two months. Jardel has only appeared in 10 games across all competitions this season as the veteran defender has taken a back seat to current starters Ruben Dias and Ferro. Jardel has been a member of Benfica since the winter of 2011 and has appeared in 258 total games for the club, the 33 year old Brazilians career is winding down but the veteran is still counted on by the club to provide the leadership in the locker room to many of the teams young stars and will be missed.

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Bruno Lage admits he wanted West Ham keeper

Benfica Blog
Benfica manager Bruno Lage in an earlier interview this week in Portugal admitted to being interested in West Ham keeper Lukasz Fabianski during the January transfer window. The 34 year old Polish keeper joined the Hammers during the summer transfer window of 2018 from Swansea City and has been West Ham's best player ever since. Fabianski's heroics have not gone unnoticed and Lage was hoping to land the veteran as insurance in case of an injury to current starting keeper Vlachodimos. Benfica have been on the hunt for a veteran keeper since the summer but have not been able to acquire one at a club friendly price. Fabianski could be available in the summer months as West Ham fight to avoid relegation and a fall to the second division would surely see the Polish International on the move. Benfica currently have youngster Ivan Zlobin as the clubs number two as Lage's hopes for a veteran went unfulfilled.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Benfica get late marker for Taca win over Famalicao

Benfica Blog
Benfica escaped with a 3-2 victory in a hard fought first leg encounter against Famalicao in their Taca de Portugal semi-final game. Benfica made four changes to their winning squad from Week 19 resting Ferro, Weigl, Rafa and Vinicius and inserting Jardel, Gabriel, Chiquinho and Seferovic in their places. The first half saw both clubs come close to opening the scoring with their close encounters going wide of the others respective net and Famalicao's keeper Vana came up with a big stop, turning aside Pizzi's free kick as the clubs went into the half scoreless. Benfica opened the scoring eight minutes into the half when Pizzi would convert a penalty after a Seferovic cross was hand balled by defender Riccieli but that lead was short lived as just five minutes later Pedro Goncalves would equalize after a scramble in front of Benfica's net. Famalicao would then take the lead on the counter attack as Pedro Goncalves turned playmaker and found a streaking Toni Martinez who broke in a alone and had his low shot get past Benfica keeper Vlachodimos. It was then Benfica's turn to equalize quickly as just six minutes later Rafa Silva would bury a Carlos Vinicius rebound to make the game 2-2 as the two substitutes clicked quickly after entering the game. Benfica would then seal the victory in additional time as Grimaldo's corner kick would find the head of Gabriel and he would make no mistake smashing home the winner to give Benfica the slim victory in the first leg, the two clubs will meet again next week at the Estadio Municipal de Famalicao on February 11 as one club looks to move into the Taca de Portugal Finals.