Saturday, April 17, 2021

Benfica slim title hopes are over with loss to Gil Vicente

With their 2-1 loss today at home to Gil Vicente, we can say that the clubs slim chances to capturing the league title are all but done and this rests heavily on the shoulders of the clubs current manager Jorge Jesus. What many Benfica fans saw as the clubs saviour, (I did not) has led the club to one of their more disappointing seasons in some time, this after spending a record €115.50M in player acquisitions over the summer transfer window.

Benfica's season should be considered a disaster after spending those sums of money to bring in the managers preferred players only to see a run of poor results. Those results have Benfica in third spot in Portugal with their Champions League aspirations hanging in the balance. Benfica trails second placed FC Porto by three points and a guaranteed place in the group stage but are also three points ahead of fourth place Braga and could fall out of the Champions League altogether.

Friday, April 16, 2021

Dantas catches attention of German clubs

Benfica Blog
Tiago Dantas got his first official start for Bayern Munich last weekend, a move that caught many by surprise with the 20 year old youngster having appeared in a total of just three minutes the whole season with the Bundesliga club. Dantas who was loaned to Bayern Munich until seasons end in October by Benfica has played a total of 69 minutes this season with Bayern and has spent most of his time with the second team.

Bayern has a buy option of just €7.5M if they decide to keep Dantas and have until the end of May to activate this clause, Benfica would be entitled to an additional 25% percent of any future sale by Bayern as part of the deal. The starting assignment for Dantas created a buzz in Germany and reports state the one current Bundesliga club and several second division sides are ready to move for Dantas if Bayern choose to not make the loan permanent.


Thursday, April 15, 2021

Benfica's month of March earns rewards

Benfica Blog
Benfica was a perfect 4-0-0 in the month of March, scoring nine goals, while keeping a clean sheet in all games. The month has not gone unnoticed with the league recognizing the clubs performance by awarding keeper Helton Leite the keeper of the month, Seferovic the forward of the month and Jorge Jesus as the manager of the month. Seferovic was also named the player of the month having scored six goals with one assist in the four games. Benfica has continued their fine defensive form into this month and have now not allowed a goal in their last six league games.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Tottenham will not activate option to purchase Vinicius

Benfica Blog
It is looking less and less likely that Tottenham will activate the €45M buy clause on their loan deal with Benfica to purchase striker Carlos Vinicius. With the current world pandemic going on and Tottenham looking set to miss out on the Champions League windfall, their focus shifts to sellers more so then buyers when the summer transfer window opens. Vinicius has scored ten goals across all competitions in 24 games played but has only scored once in Premiership action.

Vinicius played one season at Benfica after arriving from Napoli in the summer of 2019 and led the league in scoring with 18 goals, while setting up another eight. Vinicius would add another five goals across all other competitions for the club. With Benfica having plenty of options in the striker position, don't expect the 26 year old to remain with the Lisbon side next season as the club will look for suitors to take a long look at Vinicius and may even sell the striker for half the price of his current buy clause with Tottenham to recoup and make a little profit on the player.

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Benfica still monitoring Rangers midfielder

Benfica Blog
There are reports coming out of Scotland that Benfica still have some interest in Rangers midfielder Glen Kamara and are still monitoring the player as the season winds down. The 25 year old Finnish international joined Rangers in the winter of 2019 for a mere €55K from Dundee FC and will land the Scottish club a windfall when he departs the club for greener pastures.

Kamara spent a substantial amount of time during his youth years developing in England with Arsenal and Southend before moving north to Dundee FC in the summer of 2017 on a free transfer. Benfica got two good looks at Kamara's skill in the defensive midfielder role during their two game encounter in Europa League group play. 

Kamara does have two years left on his Rangers contract but with interest growing around Europe for his services, the Scottish side will be hard pressed to hang onto the player past this season. Kamara has appeared in 99 games across all competitions for Rangers, chipping in four goals while setting up five others. Rangers would be looking for a transfer fee of €10M - €15M to depart with the services of Kamara.

Friday, April 9, 2021

Benfica interested in Portimonense striker

Benfica Blog
Benfica are being linked with another player in the Portuguese League, this time with Portimonense's 23 year old striker Beto. At a time were Benfica is evaluating players in the domestic league for next season, the Lisbon born Beto has caught not only the attention of Benfica but their cross town rivals Sporting. Beto made his first appearance with the Algarve side in August of 2019 but has been a regular member of the main squad this season after spending some time with the clubs under 23 side.

Beto is signed with Portimonense until the summer of 2023 and is said to have a buy out clause of €40M but Portimonense is open to selling 70% of the players rights for a mere €8M. Beto has appeared in 23 games across all competitions this season, scoring nine goals while setting up two and is eligible to play for both Portugal and Guinea-Bissau internationally. Benfica are being linked to more and more players domestically as the look to save on player transfers during the summer transfer season.

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Benfica's Grimaldo linked to Atletico Madrid

Benfica Blog
Benfica left back Alex Grimaldo could join a long list of players that have moved between Benfica and Atletico Madrid during the summer transfer window according to reports coming from Spain. Atletico's manager Diego Simeone is said to be unsatisfied with the clubs current starting left back Renan Lodi and is ready to add an alternative during the summer months with Grimaldo at the top of his wish list.

The 25 year old Grimaldo has a contract with Benfica until the summer of 2023 which includes a €60M buy out clause but Benfica may already be looking at moving on from the Spaniard after the season with links to Wolverhampton's Ruben Vinagre dominating the news over the past few weeks. Grimaldo joined Benfica to start the year in 2016 from Barcelona B and has appeared in 191 games across all competitions for the club, scoring thirteen goals while setting up an additional thirty-seven.

Over the years Benfica and Atletico have completed various player transactions between one another. These transactions have seen Joao Felix (2019), Nico Gaitan (2016), Simao Sabrosa (2007) and Jan Oblak (2014) join the Madrid club, while heading over to Lisbon from the Spanish side has been Pizzi (2013), Salvio (2010), Roberto (2010), Jose Antonio Reyes (2008) and Raul Jimenez (2015).

Saturday, April 3, 2021

Benfica using Gestifute to land Famalicao pair

Benfica Blog
Benfica have taken the first steps in their pursuit of Famalicao pair, Ruben Vinagre and Manuel Ugarte. The 21 year old left back and 19 year old defensive midfielder have been targeted by the club for moves to Lisbon this summer, although Vinagre is currently on loan from Wolverhampton and does not belong to Famalicao. Benfica have called in the help of super agent Jorge Mendes and his Gestifute agency to facilitate the move as well as assist on the movement of players away from the club. Benfica have also been linked with current Famalicao keeper Luiz Junior and are open to taking all three players to Lisbon when the summer transfer window opens.

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Benfica ready to take a run at another big name striker

Benfica Blog
Benfica look ready to try their luck one more time on a marquee striker after failing in their pursuits of Edinson Cavani and Diego Costa over the past year and have set their eyes on upcoming free agent Sergio Aguero. The long time Manchester City striker is free to sign with any club in the summer and Benfica are throwing their name in the hat as they look to land the Argentinian international. Benfica will be hard pressed to obtain Aguero's signature with the likes of Barcelona and PSG to compete with for the strikers services.

Aguero has spent the past ten seasons with Man City since arriving from Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2011 and has appeared in 384 games across all competitions, scoring 257 goals while setting up an additional 73. Aguero gets set to depart City as the clubs all time leading goal scorer and currently sits second in titles won with the club at 12. The 32 year old has also been capped 97 times by Argentina, chipping in 41 goals for third on the nations all time list. The landing of Aguero would be a major coup for Benfica not only on the field but off it as the veteran could lend a hand in the development of young strikers Darwin Nunez and Luca Waldschmidt. Benfica are reported to have offered a three year contract to Aguero.

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Benfica looking at Gil Vicente midfielder

Benfica Blog
Benfica are being linked with Gil Vicente defensive midfielder Lucas Mineiro according to reports coming from Portugal who is currently on loan with the Barcelos club from Brazilian side Chapecoense. Gil Vicente has an option to purchase the 25 year old and will activate the clause by seasons end with the intention to sell the player for a profit. Benfica rivals Braga are also said to be interested in Mineiro who joined Gil Vicente in September and has appeared in 28 games across all competitions, scoring twice while adding one helper. Benfica who are not interested in spending the kind of money they did last summer on player acquisitions feels that Mineiro can be had at an affordable price and is a player that is already accustomed to the style of play within the league.

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Benfica ready to negotiate Krovinovic with Nottingham

Benfica Blog
Benfica are ready to negotiate the sale of Croatian midfielder Filip Krovinovic with Nottingham Forest and are said to be open to lowering the €10M price tag that they have put on the acquisition of the 25 year old. Krovinovic opened the season with West Brom but after the departure of manager Slavan Bilic, he saw his playing time reduced. Benfica ended the loan spell and moved Krovinovic to Nottingham in January were the player has appeared regularly for the Reds. Krovinovic joined Benfica in the summer of 2017 from Rio Ave for €3.5M and appeared in 28 games for the club, scoring twice while setting up another across all competitions. Krovinovic last appeared for Benfica in March 2019 and has spent the past two seasons on loan between West Brom and Nottingham Forest.

Friday, March 26, 2021

Benfica being linked with Wolves left back

Benfica Blog
According to reports coming out of Portugal, Benfica have been watching Wolverhampton left back Ruben Vinagre who is currently on loan with Famalicao until seasons end and have liked what they have seen from the 21 year old Portuguese youngster. Vinagre has started twelve straight games at Famalicao since joining the club in January and Benfica could be looking at Vinagre as the potential replacement for Alex Grimaldo who's time at the club may be coming to an end while the Lisbon side is able to cash in on the Spaniard.

Vinagre joined Wolverhampton on a permanent basis in the summer of 2018 from Monaco for €2.25M and has a contract until the summer of 2024. Benfica have not had any formal talks with Wolverhampton about Vinagre but are currently scouting the player at Famalicao along with two other Famalicao players, defensive midfielder Manuel Ugarte and keeper Luiz Junior. Vinagre could be had for a reasonable price if the two clubs are able to come to an agreement over the summer.

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Benfica badge selected as one of the best in the world

Benfica badge selected as one of the best in the world
Football magazine Four Four Two has selected Benfica's emblem as the 15th greatest ever badge in the world in their recently released article of the Top 100 Greatest Football Badges. Benfica's current badge has been in use since 2000 and Four Four Two had this to say about the clubs badge;

"Such is the ostentatious golden eagle in the background of Benfica’s crest that for years, no one has noticed the sodding bicycle wheel behind the crest. Well, did you see it?

The cursed Lisbonites have sported this badge since 2000, though the combination of all these parts goes back as far as 1906. What’s unusual is that blue, green and white heavily feature in the design - colours of Porto and Sporting, Benfica’s biggest rivals. Somehow despite the weird bike wheel, it doesn’t feel anything other than stately and majestic."

FC Porto also made Four Four Two's list selected as the 74th best badge ever.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Benfica tops Portuguese clubs in IFFHS decade rankings

Benfica Blog
The International Federation of Football History and Statistics released their best teams of the last decade (2011-2020) in European football and Benfica was tops among Portuguese clubs on their released list. Benfica earned 1762 points to finish 20th amongst all European clubs and were closely followed by FC Porto who totaled 1758 points for 21st spot on the list. Sporting with 1371.5 points sat 59th while Braga ranked 69th with 1287 points. The outcome of the IFFHS list is decided by taking into account every teams continental points earned per season over the ten years and adding them together. Barcelona topped the IFFHS list, followed by rivals Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, PSG and Atletico Madrid.


Monday, March 22, 2021

Milan make contact with Benfica for striker Nunez

Benfica Blog
Italian side AC Milan have been in contact with Benfica representatives about their interest in acquiring striker Darwin Nunez for next season as the Milan club looks to bolster their attack. Milan currently have two strikers soon to be over the age of 35 in Ibrahimovic and Mandzukic and with both strikers more prone to injuries, they prefer a youngster  to link up with Portuguese striker Rafael Leao. Milan wants a more reliable striker as they look set to make a return to Champions League action.

Nunez who was acquired by Benfica over the summer from Almeria for a club record €24M has appeared in 34 games across all competitions scoring twelve goals while setting up another nine but has been hampered by an injury over the last month or so. AC Milan are said to have opened the bidding at €50M for Nunez but Benfica value the 21 year old at a more hefty price based on his €150M buy out clause. The negotiations are at their infancy and you can expect the price to go up higher if Milan are serious in acquiring the Uruguayan international.

Saturday, March 20, 2021

Benfica President tells Jesus to use academy players

Benfica Blog
Benfica President Luis Filipe Vieira has already informed manager Jorge Jesus to not expect the type of funds spent last summer on players and for the Benfica manager to use academy players that will be returning to the club from their loans for next season. Benfica spent a record €115.5M on new player acquisitions in the summer but has seen little return on their investment with the club currently sitting in fourth place in the league and besides making the Taca de Portugal final is out of all other competitions.

Benfica also failed in reaching this seasons Champions League group stage which resulted in the club selling star center back Ruben Dias to make up the lost revenue. Benfica currently have academy players Gedson Fernandes, Jota, Florentino, Ferro, Tiago Dantas and Tomas Tavares on loan elsewhere but Jesus in his typical stubborn fashion feels that these players are not ready to play for the club at this time. Benfica currently have only three academy players with the club in Diogo Goncalves, Goncalo Ramos and Nuno Tavares, with only Goncalves seeing regular playing time.

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Benfica players set for International duty

Benfica Blog
Benfica gets set for a pause in action with the International break upon us after Sunday's game against Braga and will only return to action on April 3rd against Maritimo which is almost a full two weeks without any real game action. Jorge Jesus will still be working with the players that remain as they look to continue their better play of late but will be without the players below who will be on International duty with their respective countries, South American nations are not in action again until June.

Portugal - Rafa Silva

Greece - Odysseas Vlachodimos

Morocco - Adel Taarabt

Belgium, Germany and Switzerland have yet to announce their squads which could see Jan Vertonghen, Luca Waldschmidt and Haris Seferovic depart as well for qualifiers.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Benfica ready to sell Estadio da Luz naming rights

Benfica Blog
Benfica has teamed up with WME in a sports partnership to find a lead sponsor for the Estadio da Luz, it is the first time that the club has had a naming rights partner and WME will also lead the search for a sponsor for the teams youth academy. The Estadio da Luz has not had a sponsor since opening in October 2003 and the club is looking globally to sell the naming rights of its two most prized possessions. Benfica are hoping that this move will give the club more international exposure as it looks to maximize its brands potential. WME has plenty of experience in the sponsorship game working in the past few years with the NFL's Denver Broncos and NBA's Los Angles Lakers.

Friday, March 12, 2021

Jorge Jesus delighted with fans possible return

Benfica Blog
Jorge Jesus was excited with news received today of the potential return of fans to the stadiums in April before the end of the season. Jesus said at Benfica, the fans are the 12th man of the club and although he knows that the stadiums will not be full to capacity, the warmth and affection from the clubs fans will be as if it was. Jesus also said that any amount of fans would be good for the game with players unaccustomed to the sound of a crowd in a long time. Benfica last played in front of a large crowd on March 2, 2020 when they took on Moreirense at the Estadio da Luz, over 40,000 spectators attended the game.

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Benfica and Bahia talking about Conti

Benfica Blog
Benfica and Brazilian club Bahia are currently talking about a move for central defender German Conti who has not played for Benfica since January of 2019 after arriving in the summer of 2018 from CA Colon. The 26 year old who has a contract with Benfica until the summer of 2023 failed to impress in his short ten game stint with the club and spent the 2020 year on loan with Mexican club Atlas. Conti rejoined the club at the start of the year but is not in manager Jorge Jesus' plans and has been training separately from the main squad, whether the clubs are discussing the sale or the player or a loan has not been released at this time.

Monday, March 8, 2021

Benfica linked to Boca Juniors winger

Benfica Blog
Benfica are being linked to a summer move for Boca Juniors winger Sebastian Villa according to reports coming out of the Argentine press. Benfica's scouts have identified the 22 year old Colombian international as one of its top targets when the summer transfer window opens. Villa joined Boca Juniors in the summer of 2018 from Deportes Tolima and has appeared in 77 games across all competitions for Boca, scoring seven goals while setting up fourteen. Villa can play both right and left wing and can be used in the midfield if required. The club with Jorge Jesus at the helm continues to look to South America to bolster their squad, over looking players in the Portuguese league and its own Seixal academy, a formula that has not worked out well to date.

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Franco Cervi turns down move to Palmeiras

Benfica Blog
Brazilian club Palmeiras are interested in the services of Benfica midfielder Franco Cervi but the 26 year old Argentinian has no interest in moving back to South America and if he is to depart Benfica prefers to continue his career in Europe. Cervi was also linked last year with Argentinian club Boca Juniors but turned down the move for the same reasons. Cervi has been with Benfica since the summer of 2016, appearing in 166 games across all competitions, scoring 21 goals while setting up 26.

Thursday, March 4, 2021

Benfica book spot in Taca de Portugal final

Benfica Blog
Benfica booked their place in the Taca de Portugal Final were they will take on Braga in the season ending game of the Portuguese League season after a 2-0 victory over Estoril earlier today. Benfica entered the second leg game against Estoril after a 3-1 road victory in the first leg looking to just hang on and give some of their regular starters a rest. Benfica got goals from surprise starter Goncalo Ramos and Waldschmidt in the second half, with Estoril not presenting much of a threat managing just one shot on goal. Benfica will now play Braga at Jamor on May 23rd, their first encounter in the Taca final in the cups 100+ year history.

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Benfica look to move into Taca de Portugal final

Benfica Blog
Benfica go into Thursday's Taca de Portugal second leg against Estoril with a 3-1 first leg advantage as they look to clinch their place in the final for only the fifth time in the past 15 years. Benfica have had an extremely disappointing season to date and will look to hang onto their advantage to play for the season ending trophy which may be their only hope for some hardware this season with the league championship far from reach. Benfica would face the winners of the FC Porto-Braga showdown, as they try to capture their 27th Taca de Portugal championship in club history.

Jesus says Helton deserves to be number one keeper

Benfica Blog
Benfica manager Jorge Jesus addressed the clubs goaltending change after the Rio Ave game that saw Helton Leite move into the number one role ahead of previous starter Vlachodimos over the past few weeks. Jesus stated that the club can only play one goalie and felt that Helton has earned the chance to be the clubs number one keeper over Vlachodimos who has been the clubs number one since his arrival in the summer of 2018. Jesus said that Vlachodimos' return to goal will all depend on the play of Helton and to date he feels that the 30 year old keeper has been solid in net for Benfica since taking over the role. The move for those that know Jesus was only a matter of time, as the manager has always liked larger goalies and Helton stands at 1.96 meters which is 0.05 meters taller then Vlachodimos.

Saturday, February 27, 2021

Benfica interested in Braga defensive midfielder

Benfica Blog
According to reports from Portugal, Benfica are said to be interested in Braga defensive midfielder Al Musrati. The 24 year old has caught the eye of Benfica manager Jorge Jesus with his performances this season and is currently being evaluated by the club. Benfica have not had any formal discussions with Braga who signed Musrati on a free transfer this past summer away from Guimaraes but Musrati spent last season on loan at Rio Ave under the tutelage of current Braga manager Carlos Carvalhal who had a hand in bringing over the Libyan international. Musrati has appeared in 31 games across all competitions for Braga this season, scoring twice while setting up three others. Benfica are aware that Murati is signed until the summer of 2024 and has a €30M buy out clause which would make any negotiation difficult.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Benfica miserable season just brings more lows

Benfica Blog
Benfica's horrendous season just continues as they are unable to hang onto a lead, then an advantage in their second leg Europa League encounter against Arsenal. Benfica fell behind to start the game but equalized on a fantastic free kick by Diogo Goncalves, they then took the lead on an Arsenal mishap as Rafa Silva put them in front 2-1 with thirty minutes left in the game. The lead latest all but six minutes as Arsenal brought the game level and with three minutes left in the game, Arsenal striker Aubameyang scored his second goal of the game to put the final nail in Benfica's coffin.

Jesus' poor move to strip club number one goalie Vlachodimos of his starting spot and replace him with Helton Leite, was never more evident then on Arsenal's second goal which many feel should have been stopped but seemed to catch Leite moving the wrong way. Leite almost then gifted the game to Arsenal when his clearance deflected off an Arsenal player and gave the London side a chance to take the lead but they missed the opportunity wide.

Benfica has a Taca de Portugal final to play for an by the looks of it, not much else after spending a record €100M+ this season on a busted tire. Tomorrow may bring the end of a painful run led by Jorge Jesus who's time at the club should be over but may not be due to his relationship with club President Luis Filipe Vieira. 

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Benfica loan Yony Gonzalez to Ceara

Benfica Blog
Benfica have loaned Colombian winger Yony Gonzalez to Brazilian side Ceara until the end of 2021 as the club continues to move around the 26 year old winger who has a contract with the Lisbon side until the summer of 2024. Benfica acquired Yony on a free transfer from Fluminense during the winter transfer window of 2020 but he has yet to play a game for Benfica and has been loaned to Corinthians, L.A. Galaxy and now Ceara since the signing. Ceara will not pay Benfica any loan fee for the move but will pay the wingers full salary as part of the agreement.

Sunday, February 21, 2021

When is enough, enough when it comes to Jorge Jesus

Benfica Blog
Benfica continue to struggle under the management of Jorge Jesus after being held to a scoreless draw this afternoon against Farense and it seems Jesus' magic was left at Flamengo and change should be upon us. Jorge Jesus return to Benfica, which was hailed by many as a master coup, has been nothing short of a colossal failure. The Jesus experiment should be all but over if Benfica fail to move on in Europa League action later this week, or will it? Luis Filipe Vieira went out of his way to spend an enormous amount of money this summer to appease the arrival of Jorge Jesus totaling over €100M, Jesus arrival has also caused a hit to Benfica's Seixal academy which has seen an exodus of the clubs younger players leave on loan or see minimal playing time due to Jesus' stubbornness to adapt to change.

Jesus overall record since returning to the club, sees him with 20 wins, 10 draws and 6 losses but what that record fails to tell you is that Jesus has FAILED to win what many would call "important games" this season against rivals or in Europe. Benfica have been unable to defeat FC Porto, Sporting and Braga in league and cup play, they also failed to defeat the Rangers twice in a battle for the top spot of their Europa group, they failed to qualify for the Champions League group stage after a loss to PAOK and we just witnessed the latest failure this past week when the club played Arsenal to a draw in the first leg of the round of 32 Europa League action. 

Jesus record is an unimpressive 0 (wins), 4 (draws) 4 (losses) in these contests. Would a manager of any other name who sits in fourth place in the league, fifteen points out of first, still be at the helm of Portugal's biggest and most popular club? Luis Filipe Vieira, Rui Costa and the clubs directors need to sit down and have a serious conversation about which direction this club is to take and when they get moving down that road, make sure to leave Jorge Jesus off at the bus stop, as his time with the club should be done.

Friday, February 19, 2021

Seferovic lets Benfica know he is interested in move

Benfica Blog
Benfica striker Haris Seferovic has let is be known through his interview with Swiss channel Bluewin yesterday that he is open to a move away from the club if the move were to be to the Premier League. Seferovic who has a contract with Benfica until the summer of 2024 discussed how he has played in Portugal, Italy, Germany and Spain and would love for his career to end by playing in England. The 28 year old Swiss striker also let it be known how much he and his family enjoy living in Portugal but this is a move that would be hard to pass on. Seferovic joined Benfica in the summer of 2017 on a free transfer from Eintracht Frankfurt and has since appeared in 155 games across all competitions, scoring 55 goals while setting up 19. Seferovic captured the golden boot during the 2018/19 season scoring 23 goals.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Benfica and Tottenham re-ignite talks for Pizzi

Benfica Blog
Benfica and Tottenham have begun talks once again on the move of midfielder Pizzi to the English Premier side. The two clubs spoke in the summer about a move but nothing materialized as Benfica hold firm on a €20M price tag for the 31 year old Portuguese international. Tottenham manager Jose Mourinho is said to be a fan of Pizzi and wants to add the player as part of the clubs attacking mix for next season. Pizzi has been a member of Benfica since being acquired from Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2013 but spent his first season on loan at Espanyol before returning to the Lisbon side permanently in the summer of 2014. Pizzi has appeared in 312 games for the club across all competitions, scoring 87 goals while setting up 89.

Pizzi has been an integral part of Benfica's rise back to the top of Portuguese football over the past few seasons capturing, four league titles, two league cups, three super cups and a Taca de Portugal while being named the league's most valuable player during the 2016-2017 season. Pizzi was also a member of Portugal's UEFA Nations League title winners in 2019. Pizzi has been linked with moves away from Benfica over the years but has remained at the club but this could be the players final chance to make a move to one of Europe's richest clubs and a chance to apply his trade in what many consider the worlds best football league.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Benfica move on from Jose Gomes

Benfica blog
Benfica has come to an agreement with Bulgarian club Cherno More Varna on the permanent transfer of striker Jose Gomes, ending a relationship with the 21 year old striker that dates back to 2012. Cherno More is managed by former Benfica player Ilian Iliev and plays in Bulgaria's top league, Gomes will join fellow Portuguese players Leandro Andrade and Rodrigo Vilela at the club. Gomes appeared in five games with Benfica's main squad, totaling 118 minutes and failed to score or provide an assist in that span. Gomes was named the player of the tournament in 2016 when Portugal won the Euro U17 tournament, scoring seven goals in six games during tournament play but could not transfer his success to the main squad. Gomes spent the last couple of seasons on loan with Portimonense and Polish side Lechia Gdansk but was unimpressive during both loan spells. Gomes will get a fresh start in Bulgarian football and at the young age of 21 could still live up to the tag as one of the clubs more promising Seixal academy players if he gets his game back on track. No terms of the deal have been announced at this time.

Friday, February 12, 2021

Benfica file complaint against Sporting with Federation

Benfica file grievance with the Portuguese Football Federation's disciplinary council against Sporting for the potential illegal use of Joao Palhinha during the clubs recent Lisbon derby encounter on February 1. The Sporting midfielder had received his fifth yellow card of the season against Boavista the week prior which leads to an automatic one game suspension but Sporting appealed to the Central Administrative Court who suspended the decision that had suspended Palhinha from playing in the Lisbon Derby. Palhinha came on as a substitute during the game and was on the field when Sporting scored the winner in additional time which motivated Benfica to file the grievance against Sporting for going through the civil courts, something that is not permitted by sports regulations. Palhinha has continued to play for Sporting while his suspension is under analysis as Sporting risk being deducted points and fined if the disciplinary council rule in favour of Benfica.

Monday, February 8, 2021

Benfica interested in Napoli fullback

Benfica Blog
Italian website Tuttomercatoweb is reporting that Benfica has reached out to the representatives of Napoli right back Elseid Hysaj who's contract ends at the conclusion of this season and is currently free to negotiate a new contract with any club. The 27 year old right back has played in only half of Napoli's league games, with the majority of those games played at the left back position. The Albanian international joined Napoli in the summer of 2015 for €5M from Empoli and has appeared in 208 games for the Italian side across all competitions, scoring once and providing nine helpers. Hysaj is said to be ready to move from Napoli as his playing time has diminished over the past couple of seasons. Benfica manager Jorge Jesus has not been content with his options at the right back position after the season ending injury to starter Andre Almeida and has flipped flopped between summer signing Gilberto and youngster Diogo Goncalves. Benfica are hoping that Hysaj will bring a bit more stability to the position whether it be in a number one role or as the clubs back up.

Sunday, February 7, 2021

Jorge Jesus returns behind bench against Famalicao

Benfica Blog
Jorge Jesus will be back on the sidelines when Benfica take on Famalicao in Week 18 action tomorrow night in Lisbon. Jesus has been out while he battled a COVID-19 infection and will look to right the ship at the club going into the second half of the season. Benfica currently sit in fourth place in league standings and are eleven points behind league leaders Sporting. Benfica are also winless in their last four league games, scoring only two goals in that span. Jesus' return has been nothing but a complete failure to date and if the club continues this form it could see the JJ era end very shortly.

Thursday, February 4, 2021

Jorge Jesus improving as he battles COVID-19 virus

Benfica Blog
Benfica manager Jorge Jesus is coming along well as he deals with a respiratory infection due to being infected with COVID-19 since testing positive on January 28. Jesus is currently resting at home and is constantly being monitored by Benfica's medical team. Jesus will miss his third Benfica game tomorrow as the club takes on Guimaraes in Week 17 action after suffering a devastating loss to Lisbon rivals Sporting in Week 16 action. Benfica currently sit in fourth place in the league and are nine points behind league leaders Sporting as the season gets set to hit the half way mark.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Benfica keeper wanted by Borussia Dortmund

Benfica Blog
Benfica keeper Odysseas Vlachodimos is on German club Borussia Dortmund's radar according to reports coming from the publication BILD. Dortmund's management team are said to be looking for a new number one keeper next season, as they have grown tired of current starter Roman Burki's inconsistency. Dortmund have been informed that Benfica's current keeper would not come cheap as he has a contract with the Lisbon side until the summer of 2024. Vlachodimos is famaliar with the Bundesliga having gone through Stuttgart's youth system and arrived at Benfica in the summer of 2018 from Greek club Panathinaikos for €2.4M. The 26 year old German born keeper who chose to play football for Greece internationally due to his family lineage has appeared in 116 games across all competitions for Benfica since joining the club with 44 clean sheets to his name.

Friday, January 29, 2021

Benfica advance to Taca de Portugal semis

Benfica Blog
Benfica advanced to the Taca de Portugal semi-final after a convincing 3-0 win over Belenenses SAD and will now take on surprising semi-finalist and second division side Estoril in a two leg encounter. Benfica got first half goals from Darwin Nunez and Rafa Silva, while Franco Cervi chipped in a second half goal to finish the scoring for the hosts. Benfica will play the first leg at Estoril between February 9-11 while hosting the second leg between March 2-4. The victory was much needed for the Lisbon side who have been dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak within its squad and staff over the past few weeks, with manager Jorge Jesus being the latest to test positive for the virus. The winner of the Benfica/Estoril encounter will take on the winner of FC Porto/Braga in the Finals scheduled to take place on May 23rd at Jamor.

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Jorge Jesus will not be on the bench for Taca game

Benfica Blog

Jorge Jesus will miss today's Taca de Portugal quarter-final encounter against Belenenses SAD due to a severe respiratory infection that the Portuguese manager is currently battling. Jesus spent the day yesterday in Lisbon hospital running tests as his condition which includes coughing, fever and associated chills worsened but he did test negative for COVID-19. Assistant Manager Joao de Deus will take over the managerial duties for today's game and could also do the same when the club takes on Sporting on Monday in the Lisbon Derby as it is unknown how long the 66 year old manager will be out as the club looks to keep him away from his duties with the on going pandemic. Benfica did receive some good news with the return of striker Waldschmidt from his COVID-19 isolation and will also have the services of Alex Grimaldo, Gilberto, Diogo Goncalves and Vertonghen as their time in isolation due to COVID-19 is over.

Update: It has been announced that Jorge Jesus has tested positive for COVID-19, the club states that he had 7 negative tests prior to testing positive.

Monday, January 25, 2021

Benfica release depleted squad for Nacional encounter

Benfica Blog
Benfica are set to host Madeira side Nacional in Week 15 action of the Portuguese League with a depleted roster due to ten of the clubs players currently out of action after testing positive for COVID-19. The devastating impact of the positive tests will be Benfica dip to third stringers in their league game. Benfica will play Nacional at 5pm WEST at the Estadio da Luz. They will dress all 20 players from the list below for the encounter..
Keepers- Mile Svilar, Fabio Duarte

Defenders- Ferro, Jardel, Todibo, Joao Ferreira

Midfielders- Chiquinho, Pizzi, Taarabt, Franco Cervi, Samaris, Julian Weigl, Rafa Silva, Pedrinho, Tiago Araujo

Forwards- Darwin Nunez, Goncalo Ramos, Seferovic, Facundo Ferreyra 

Friday, January 22, 2021

Jorge Jesus waiting to go 3-4-3

Benfica Blog
Benfica manager Jorge Jesus is waiting on the arrival of recent signing Lucas Verissimo as rumours swirl that he is ready to change Benfica's formation to an attacking 3-4-3. For Jesus' 3-4-3 formation to work he will rely on players to fully understand their roles in this type of formation as he switches to playing with 3 center backs in his starting eleven. A key piece to the 3-4-3 system will be defensive midfielder Julian Weigl who will be expected to get back deeper into the defensive box when the club defends opponents attacks while joining the club on the offensive. Jesus will count on his current squad to master this type of formation which would see the club pin opponents back with the sheer number of players that can commit to the attack but this type of formation requires the right type of skilled players, as stamina and tactical discipline are a big part of this formation working. Jesus is looking to not only compete for the league title at home but make a run in UEFA's Europa League with an attack that might just be hard to defend.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Benfica face world reality after massive covid cases

Benfica Blog
The world as we know has not been the same in almost a year but the little sense of normality that we took some comfort in was watching our favourite sport clubs play even if their were practically little to zero fans in the stands. Today though the world reality hit our favourite club Benfica who have been rocked with 17 positive cases of COVID that effects the clubs players, coaching and general staff. Benfica have had to deal with small cases of COVID-19 among its club during the season but not at such a high level of infection as it sees now.

Benfica have five of the clubs players among the 17 positive cases, this includes Diogo Goncalves, Gilberto, Jan Vertonghen, Alex Grimaldo and Waldschmidt along with club President Luis Filipe Vieira. Winger Everton is also in isolation due to his spouse testing positive, although he himself has tested negative for the virus. Benfica is set to play tomorrow in a semi-final encounter against Braga in Taca da Liga action but the league is currently pondering how best to proceed with the clubs games over the next two weeks. Benfica manager Jorge Jesus who has tested negative for the virus had his press conference cancelled by the club today as they deal with this current situation.

Updated- Benfica have two more player cases of COVID-19 with Nuno Tavares and Otamendi testing positive

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Benfica's Classico result does the club no favours

Benfica Blog
Benfica entered their road game against arch rivals FC Porto knowing that a victory would close the gap on league leaders Sporting who had just dropped points in a draw against Rio Ave earlier in the day. Benfica and FC Porto both sat four points behind Sporting with one of them having an opportunity to close the gap to just two points with a victory. Benfica manager Jorge Jesus provided a surprise in his starting eleven when he moved starting left back Alex Grimaldo into the midfield in place of Everton giving Nuno Tavares the start in Grimaldo's place. The move provided dividends right away for the club when Grimaldo opened the scoring just 17 minutes into the game on a beautiful chip over Porto's keeper. 

The joy was short lived with Porto equalizing just eight minutes later, a score that would hold up until the final whistle was blown. Benfica was giving an advantage to go for victory with just 17 minutes left in the game as Porto goal scorer Taremi was a given a straight red card after a VAR review changed his original yellow card for a hard challenge on Benfica defender Otamendi. Benfica who were having one of their better performances of the season was unable to capitalize on the advantage and blew an opportunity to close the gap on the league leaders.

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Benfica set to take Belenenses in quarter-finals

Benfica Blog
Benfica are set to take on Belenenses in the Taca de Portugal quarter-final game towards the end of the month after defeating Amadora 4-0 in their round of 16 game. Benfica got a pair of goals from Chiquinho with Seferovic and Waldschmidt chipping in as they cruised to past the division three side. Belenenses SAD had to come from two goals down to defeat Fafe 3-2 in additional extra time to get to the quarter-final stage. The winner of the Benfica/Belenenses game will face the winner of Maritimo/Estoril in a two leg semi-final encounter before moving into the Taca de Portugal Finals. Benfica have won 29 Taca de Portugal titles.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Is Goncalo Ramos being dangled to Maritimo for Pinho?

Benfica Blog
With Benfica having secured the signature of Maritimo striker Rodrigo Pinho on a free transfer after his contract ends with the Madeira club this summer, Benfica manager Jorge Jesus is pushing to have the 29 year old join the club now instead of later this year. Maritimo have no interest in allowing their leading scorer from this season and last to depart before his contract runs out without an incentive from the Lisbon side, so look for the clubs to complete a loan swap if Pinho is to join Benfica this month.

The name that has been whispered around Portugal with a move to Maritimo is 19 year old youngster Goncalo Ramos, the attacking forward would join the Madeira club on loan until seasons end, providing Ramos with valuable experience while he plays regular minutes at Maritimo. Ramos has only appeared in 180 minutes for Benfica across all competitions this season scoring once while setting up another, he has also appeared in four games for Benfica B were he scored seven goals and added three assists earning himself a promotion to the main club.

Pinho who has been on fire this season for Maritimo has scored sixteen goals across all competitions in just fourteen games, with one of his markers coming yesterday in a surprise Maritimo win over Sporting in Taca de Portugal action. It is no wonder that Jorge Jesus is pushing to have the productive striker join the club now and not in the summer.

Monday, January 11, 2021

Chiquinho with many options to leave club

Benfica Blog

Benfica attacking midfielder Chiquinho looks set to move on from the club during the winter transfer period and the 25 year old has many suitors lining up for his services. Benfica have already been approached by Russian side Krasnodar who were looking to strike a deal for Chiquinho last season, Italian club Torino seem to have also re-kindled their interest in the player. Chiquinho has also been linked with a move to the Vancouver Whitecaps of Major League Soccer and reports also state that Chiquinho has interest from clubs in Spain, France and Turkey to chose from. Chiquinho joined Benfica last season from Moreirense for €5.25M and has appeared in 46 games for the club across all competitions scoring three times while setting up another seven. With the arrival of Jorge Jesus at the club Chiquinho has only appeared in eight games of the clubs 24 this season.

Friday, January 8, 2021

Benfica defender Ferro set for loan move to Spain

Benfica Blog
Benfica defender Ferro is set for a loan move to Spanish side Valencia with the 23 year old scheduled to fly to Spain next week for medicals. With the arrival of defender Lucas Verissimo from Santos in the next coming weeks, Ferro's playing time at the club would be further reduced then what it already is now, so the youngster is open to a move abroad.

Ferro is a Benfica academy product and would join former academy teammate Goncalo Guedes at Valencia. Ferro made his senior team appearance with Benfica in early 2019 and has appeared in 63 games across all competitions scoring 4 goals. Ferro would be the fifth academy player to be loaned out by the club, joining Jota, Tomas Tavares, Florentino and Tiago Dantas since the arrival of Jorge Jesus this summer.

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Benfica land Maritimo striker Rodrigo Pinho

Benfica Blog
Rodrigo Pinho will be a Benfica player next season after the club and player have come to an agreement on making the move to the Lisbon side in the summer. The 29 year old striker is coming to the end of his contract with Maritimo in six months and was free to negotiate with any club, Benfica and Pinho had been in discussions since the start of the winter transfer window. The deal is rumoured to be for five seasons but has not yet been disclosed. Benfica will be Pinho's fourth Portuguese club, with the striker also having stints at Braga and Nacional. Pinho has appeared in 111 games for Maritimo across all competitions since joining the club in the summer of 2017 and has scored 41 goals.

Monday, January 4, 2021

Benfica finally land Santos defender

Benfica Blog
Benfica have finally landed sought after Santos defender Lucas Verissimo after months of the central defender being linked with a move to the club. The agreement for the 25 year is said to be for €6.5M to be paid in three installments with the first part of the payment taking place upon the players departure to Portugal. The agreement will also keep Verissimo at Santos until the end of the Copa Libertadores 2020 tournament with the finals set to take place on January 30, Santos are currently in the semi-finals.

Verissimo has been with Santos' main squad since the 2016 season and has appeared in 130 games for the club across all competitions over that time, scoring three goals. Santos President Andreas Rueda signed the transfer documentation earlier today and the club now awaits for Benfica President Luis Filipe Vieira's signature to make the transfer between the two clubs firm. With the arrival of Verissimo, Jorge Jesus may look to go with a system that plays three center backs pushing his wing backs more forward in what would be a 3-5-2 formation.