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.