Friday, December 29, 2023

Benfica to move defender Joao Victor to Vasco

Benfica Blog
Benfica are set to announce the sale of center back Joao Victor to Brazilian side Vasco da Gama for €6M, with add-ons that could bring the total move to €8M. 

The 25 year old arrived at the Lisbon club in the summer of 2022 from Corinthians for €9.5M, but could never carve out a place within the squad and will depart having appeared in only five games with a grand total of 170 minutes of action.

Victor dropped down the depth chart this season, becoming the fifth option for Roger Schmidt's side. Victor was even given a chance to be the club's backup right back this season, but that move failed miserable, and the club finally decided to move on from the player.

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Angel di Maria absence opens door for Goncalo Guedes

Benfica Blog

Goncalo Guedes looks set to get his first league start for Benfica since early November with Angel di Maria set to miss Friday's game against Famalicao due to the fact that he will be attending his sister's wedding in Argentina and has been given permission by the club to extend his holidays and miss the Week 15 encounter.

Guedes has yet to play a full ninety minutes with Benfica this season, thanks in part to injuries, but also because Roger Schmidt prefers to roll out just about the same line up for every encounter. Guedes who is on loan from Wolves until the end of this campaign has appeared in 12 games this season across all competitions, providing two assists in 251 minutes of action. 

Guedes possesses the qualities of a great winger and Benfica are hoping that he will put that on display on Friday as the club looks to take all three points in their league encounter.

Sunday, December 24, 2023

Marseille eye Benfica striker for January move

Benfica Blog
A salvation for Benfica could be coming in January, with reports from La Tribune Olympienne that Marseille are interested in making a move for the out of favour striker who has just not been able to fit in with the Lisbon side since arriving from Fiorentina in the summer.

Cabral has scored a meager three goals this season in eighteen appearances across all competitions and has yet to score a goal in league play, all this while seeing 644 minutes of action, as his lack of production has cost the 25 year old playing time with the squad.

Benfica acquired Cabral from Fiorentina for €20M in hopes that the Brazilian would replace the goal production lost by the departure of Goncalo Ramos, who moved to PSG a few weeks prior but Cabral's lack of finish and issues with the club's fans (drive by flipping of the bird) have made the latest rumours of Marseille's interest, welcome news.


Thursday, December 21, 2023

Benfica move into Final Four of Taca da Liga

Benfica Blog
Benfica came into their final group game of the Taca da Liga, coming off a 1-0 nail biting victory over Braga on the weekend. The Lisbon club came ready to host AVS (formerly Aves) with a goal of advancing into the Final Four of the Taca da Liga after missing out last season.

AVS opened the scoring, putting a scare into Benfica and the crowd, but Angel di Maria, Joao Mario, Tiago Gouveia, and an own goal saw the home side capture the victory easily (4-1) when the night was said and done. Benfica will now take on Estoril in one semi-final for a place in the Final, which is set for January 27, 2024, at the Estadio Municipal de Leiria.

On a scary note, a fan was stabbed during the game. Police and firefighters were quick to respond, and the man was taken to the hospital, where it is reported in Portugal that he is currently in stable condition.

Monday, December 18, 2023

Benfica draw Toulouse in Europa League playoff

Benfica Blog
Benfica found out their opponents earlier today when they were drawn against French club Toulouse for their Europa League playoff which will take place in a two leg affair in February on the 15th and 22nd. Benfica will host the first leg at their famous Estadio da Luz before traveling to France for the second leg.

Toulouse finished runner up in their Europa League group, one point behind group winners Liverpool, earning a victory over the English club at home during match day four. Toulouse's Ligue 1 season has been rather disappointing with the club currently sitting 15th in the league standings with just two wins on the season which is one less then they got in the Europa League.

The winner of this clash will move into the Europa League round of 16 were they will face one of the eight group winners that have a bye for this upcoming round.

Saturday, December 16, 2023

San Lorenzo eyed right back signs new contract

Benfica Blog
San Lorenzo's 19 year old right back Agustin Giay has signed a new contract until 2026 with his Argentinian club with the main kicker being an increase to his buy out clause which now stands at around €18M. The move was made to protect San Lorenzo's asset who is wanted by a host of European club's which include Lisbon side Benfica.

Benfica may find the cost to land Giay to be in the higher end range then the club would like to pay and moved towards a more affordable option in Boavista right back Pedro Malheiro. This is not to say that Benfica have given up on Giay but more so that they want to negotiate a lower price tag for the services of the Argentinian U20 captain. 

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Benfica play complete game to move into Europa League

Benfica Blog
Benfica went into their game against RB Salzburg knowing that they needed a two-goal victory if they were to continue playing in a UEFA competition this season, although it would have to be in the second-tier Europa League with advancement out of the Champions League group not happening this year.

When all was said and done, Benfica did just that, needing an additional time goal from the unluckiest of heroes, in Arthur Cabral, to seal a 3-1 victory in Austria in what may have just been their most complete game of the season. The final score was flattering to Salzburg, who were heavily outplayed in this contest, and if not for some poor finishing, the final score could have been double what it ended up being.

Benfica will now move into the Europa League playoff where they will face a group stage runner-up who is already in the Europa League with a spot in the round of 16 going to the eventual winner of the two-legged affair. Benfica will play the first contest at home, with the second leg against their opponent at their home stadium.

Monday, December 11, 2023

Benfica eye Estoril winger Rafik Guitane

Benfica Blog
Benfica have turned their attention to Estoril winger Rafik Guitane and have opened talks with Estoril about the player according to reports coming from Portugal's Maisfutebol. Benfica are hoping to make a move for Guitane in January when the winter transfer window opens as they look to add depth to their squad.

Estoril value the 24 year old at €4M to €5M and hold 70% of the players rights with French club Stade Reims having the remaining 30%. Guitane spent part of last season on loan at Estoril and the prior two seasons with Maritimo.

Guitane has appeared in 18 games across all competitions this season, scoring four goals while providing two helpers.

Sunday, December 10, 2023

Benfica need to let Di Maria walk in the summer

Benfica Blog

Angel di Maria got a hero's welcome as you would expect for the 35 year old when it was announced that he was returning to Benfica after departing the club thirteen years earlier. 

Di Maria signed a contract for one season with a salary in excess of €9M and it got off how you hoped as Di Maria netted the eventually game winner in Benfica's Super Cup triumph over bitter rivals FC Porto back in August.

Di Maria then started the league season on fire, potting five goals while providing two helpers in the club's first seven games of the season. Then the injury bug hit in early October, and Di Maria has since been a shell of the player who looked poised to carry this club on another spectacular run.

Di Maria has now gone pointless in his past five league games and past two Champions League games with his lone marker being a free kick in a League Cup game. Those are not the totals you want to see from a player over the past two months who makes double what any other player makes in the Portuguese League.

Some may say that Benfica's finishing has been less then clinical; I agree but when a 19 year old tends to be the club's best performer game in and game out over the past few months with the talent that this club should have, it speaks volumes about what Di Maria has failed to bring over that same span.

Argentinian side Rosario Central is hoping to bring Di Maria back home for his final season or two. I say, let him go and book the private jet to Buenos Aires and get this thing moving along; the sooner the better.

It is normal for players to go cold, but when they do, they need to bring other aspects of their games up while they try to get out of the funk. But when a player is cold and becoming a liability defensively for the squad, then it is time to sit his butt on the bench. Are you listening Roger Schmidt or Rui Costa?

Thursday, December 7, 2023

Joao Victor could be on way out of Benfica

Benfica Blog
Joao Victor could be on his way out of Benfica when the winter transfer window opens over the next few weeks, with the potential destination being Turkish club Besiktas, according to reports from Aksam Spor. The 25 year old was suggested to Besiktas, and the Istanbul club is currently studying the possibility of a move to add reinforcements to the back line.

Victor joined Benfica in the summer of 2022 from Corinthians for €9.5M but has not been able to earn regular playing time at Benfica. He has made just two appearances for Benfica this season, appearing in a mere twenty-seven minutes. While last season, after joining the club, he appeared in just three games before joining Nantes on loan for half the season.

Victor has a contract with Benfica until the summer of 2027 with a €100M buyout clause. but look for any move to Besiktas to be a loan move with an option to buy at the conclusion of the season.

Monday, December 4, 2023

Benfica drop points with lacklustre display in Minho

Benfica Blog
In a lackluster display of football, Benfica dropped crucial points against Moreirense with a scoreless draw, putting their top spot in Portugal's league at risk to rivals Sporting. The match was marked by a lack of creativity and intensity from the Benfica players, who seemed unable to break through Moreirense's solid defensive display.

Benfica's attacking line continues to struggle to find the back of the net and is a shadow of the club known for its flair and goal-scoring abilities last season. The team lacks cohesion and is struggling to create clear-cut chances in their encounters. With Sporting set to play today, a victory by their Lisbon rivals will see them move into sole possession of the top spot, dropping Benfica to second.

The draw against Moreirense not only puts Benfica's top spot at risk but also highlights some underlying issues within the team. The club continues to play with no wing backs due to injuries and Schmidt's lack of trust in what he has on hand. This creates breakdowns in the attack as both Aursnes and Morato provide little in offensive flair while their defensive coverage continues to be exploited.

It is essential for Benfica's coaching staff to address these concerns promptly, as the club is getting half a performance from these two players when out of their natural positions, which hampers the overall club performance as Benfica could be considered to be a man down every moment of the match.

The winter transfer window can not come soon enough and is less than a month away. Benfica needs to shore up their wing back positions if they are to contend for the league crown this year. The holes are so glaring at the moment that the club might just disappear into a black hole if they do not.

Saturday, December 2, 2023

Benfica closing in on Boavista right back

Benfica Blog
Benfica and Boavista are in advanced talks about right back Pedro Malheiro, as Benfica looks to shore up the position, which has had a hole for most of the season due to injuries to starter Alexander Bah. The 22 year old Malheiro has been on the Lisbon club's radar since last season and looks set to become the Eagles first winter signing.

Malheiro has been out of action with an muscle injury since Week 5 of the season but is set to return shortly. He is currently represented by Jorge Mendes' Gestifute agency. Benfica are hoping to land the right back for €4M and see him as a better alternative to the current merry go round of players that have been exposed due to playing out of position in the role.

Friday, December 1, 2023

Benfica ready to sneak in for Estudiantes winger

Benfica Blog
Benfica's name has been linked to another Argentinian winger as the club looks to beat out a host of teams from across Europe, for Estudiantes' 23 year old Benjamin Rollheiser. Benfica is set to announce the acquisition of Velez Sarsfield's 18 year old winger Gianluca Prestianni in the coming weeks and hopes to beat out Newcastle, Zenit St. Petersburg, and CSKA Moscow for another Argentinian winger's signature.

Rollheiser has appeared in 56 games for Estudiantes this season across all competitions, scoring twelve goals and providing eight helpers in 4,273 minutes of action. Rollheiser joined Estudiantes in the summer of 2022 on a free transfer after spending a good amount of time in the River Plate system.

Benfica seem to be looking ahead to potential replacement's for Angel di Maria, whose contract is up at the end of this season, as both Prestianni and Rollheiser predominately play on the right side of the attacking forward wing.

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Benfica blow game against Inter and hang by a thread to continue in Europe

Benfica Blog
Benfica opened the game against Inter Milan on fire as Inter's decision to make a massive amount of changes from their weekend game's starting XI haunted them. Benfica would take a 3-0 lead into halftime on a hat trick by Joao Mario, but the second half saw all their hard work completely unravel, and the game ended with a disappointing 3-3 draw.

Benfica scored just five minutes into the game when Joao Mario took a head pass from striker Casper Tengstedt to open the scoring. Benfica would double their lead just eight minutes later, and Joao Mario would complete the hat trick at the 34 minute mark through another Casper Tengstedt helper.

The second half would then see the wheels fall off the wagon as Benfica seemed content to sit and defend, a decision that would prove costly as Inter brought the lead down to two goals with an ever so close on side goal just six minutes into the half. They would score again seven minutes later, and the comeback would be complete on a controversial penalty kick awarded at the 72 minute mark, bringing the game level.

Benfica were lucky to even escape with the point on this night as Inter Milan would smash a shot off the bar in injury time after Benfica went down a man with a straight red card awarded to center back Antonio Silva in the 86th minute for a reckless challenge by the youngster.

Benfica will now have to travel to Salzburg and defeat the Austrian club by three goals if they are to remain in Europe and qualify for the Europa League in two weeks, a feat that seems unlikely given the Lisbon's sides form during this year's Champions League campaign.

Benfica are bleeding from both wing back positions, as the club decided to use a midfielder and center back in those roles against Inter, add on the manager's continued hesitation to use his bench earlier, and this is a Benfica side that has simply looked terrible from the opening 15 minutes of the competition.

Benfica still have a chance to continue in Europe but will need to play their best game of the season in Austria. Sadly we have yet to see that version of the club this season.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Benfica will need to lay it all on the line in Champions League

Benfica Blog
Benfica are coming off a weekend Taca de Portugal victory over Famalicao, which moved the Lisbon club into the round of 16 in Portugal's premier club competition. The Eagles will now need to channel that momentum into the club's first points in the Champions League as they get set to host Inter Milan tomorrow in their fifth group game.

Benfica currently sits at the bottom of their group, not only having yet to pick up points but having scored just once through the first four games. Benfica have already been eliminated from reaching the round of 16 but can still move into the Europa League with the right amount of points gained in their final two games.

They currently trail third place side Red Bull Salzburg by three points and will face the Austrian club in their final game in Salzburg to close out their Champions League campaign. Benfica will travel without supporters after the club's fans were issued a ban due to behavior in their previous road game at Sociedad. 

Saturday, November 25, 2023

Benfica ready for Taca showdown against Famalicao

Benfica Blog
Benfica are ready to host Famalicao in the 4th round of the Taca de Portugal later today after a break due to international duty for a host of the club's players. The clash between the pair promises to be an exciting encounter with a David vs Goliath appeal.

Benfica last hoisted the prestigious Taca de Portugal during the 2016-17 season and have captured the trophy a record 26 times since the competition took its current form in 1938. Benfica did make back to back finals in 2019-20 and 2020-21 but lost on both occasions to FC Porto and Braga, respectively.

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

PSG make Goncalo Ramos loan move permanent

Benfica Blog
PSG have activated the buy clause to make the loan move for striker Goncalo Ramos permanent and are set to hand Benfica a windfall of €80M for the services of the Portuguese striker. Ramos joined PSG in the summer on loan for €20M and Benfica will now receive an additional €60M from the Paris club for the permanent move.

Ramos is currently being used in a rotation with Randal Kolo Muani, who also moved to Paris during the summer window and has appeared in fifteen games across all competitions for PSG, scoring twice and providing an assist. Ramos' two goals came against Marseille in a league game. PSG has signed Ramos until the summer of 2028.


Monday, November 20, 2023

Villarreal looking at Benfica winger Goncalo Guedes

Benfica Blog
Benfica winger Goncalo Guedes has popped up on the radar of Spanish club Villarreal according to reports from Spain's Radio Marca. The 26 year old has been on loan at Benfica from Wolverhampton since January of 2022 and has only recently returned from a lengthy injury suffered late into of last season.

Villarreal has just hired Guedes' former Valencia manager Marcelino Toral and the Spaniard sees Guedes as potential solution to the prolonged absence of the club's striker Yereni Pino. Guedes has a contract with Wolves until the summer of 2027 and Benfica are not keen to lose the winger as the battle for the Portuguese League title.

Saturday, November 18, 2023

Future of Lucas Verissimo to be decided in winter window

Benfica Blog
Lucas Verissimo is currently applying his trade in his homeland of Brazil on loan from Benfica to Corinthians until the end of June 2024. Benfica received €1M from Corinthians for the loan, which started this past summer.

Corinthians are in the middle of a presidential election, but both combatants have expressed their interest in making Verissimo's loan deal permanent before the loan expires in 2024. Benfica acquired the 28 year old from Santos in the winter of 2021 for €6.5M, and signed the center back until the summer of 2026.

Benfica is no longer interested in bringing Verissimo back to the club and is open to negotiating a move out for the right price. Verissimo appeared in 41 games across all competitions in his time with the club, scoring five goals while providing two helpers. 

It was Verissimo's long term injury that opened the door for Antonio Silva to step in at the club last season, and the rest is history.


Thursday, November 16, 2023

Benfica closing in on move for Velez winger

Benfica Blog
Benfica are set to beat a couple of European giants in Real Madrid and Barcelona for the signature of 17 year old Argentinian winger Gianluca Prestianni, who is currently applying his trade with Velez Sarsfield in Argentina.

Velez's newly elected President, Fabian Berlanda, confirms that the club has received an offer from Benfica for Prestianni and that they will analyze the formal bid from the Lisbon club, which is said to be in the area of €8M for 85% of players rights plus bonuses.

Prestianni is considered one of the best young talents currently playing in Argentina and has this season appeared in 33 games across all competitions for Velez, scoring 3 goals in 1660 minutes of action.

Monday, November 13, 2023

Benfica win in dramatic fashion to move into top spot

Benfica Blog
After imposing their first defeat on Sporting 2-1 at the Luz, Benfica rose to the top of the league table, with the same 28 points as Sporting, who dropped to second place, and three more than FC Porto. Benfica can thank the victory to a pair of goals in added time that sent the home crowd into a whirlwind frenzy.

Viktor Gyokeres gave Sporting the lead just before the 45th minute, with Joao Neves equalizing at 90th minute +4 and Casper Tengstedt winning it at 90th minute +7, when Sporting were playing with one player less after Goncalo Inacio received his second yellow card of the game in the 51st minute.

Benfica continue to not play with their best form to date but have now squeezed out two victories at the Luz over both Sporting and FC Porto this season, the first time they have accomplished such a feat in over 10 years.

Benfica now heads into the international break in the top spot in Portugal, hoping that this dramatic comeback victory will kickstart the club's resurgence.

Sunday, November 12, 2023

Benfica rumours in Abel Ferreira far fetched

Benfica Blog
According to reports from the Brazilian newspaper Lance, Benfica is said to be interested in the services of current Palmeiras bench boss Abel Ferreira due to the club's current string of inconsistent performances, especially in the Champions League, where they have lost all four games while scoring just once.

Current manager Roger Schmidt is just in his second season at the club but has a contract that runs into the summer of 2026 after receiving an extension during last season from his original two year pact. While Abel's contract at Palmeiras goes to the end of 2024.

Benfica were previously linked with Abel last summer before acquiring Schmidt before the start of last season, after his contract with PSV ended. A move away from Schmidt before the end of his contract could prove quite costly for Benfica, as the German currently earns €4M per season.

Schmidt has led Benfica to the Portuguese League title in 2022/23 and captured the Portuguese Super Cup to start the season.

Saturday, November 11, 2023

Benfica set for biggest game of season in Lisbon

Benfica Blog

The upcoming clash between Benfica and Sporting at the Estadio Da Luz is undoubtedly the biggest game of the season for both teams. As Lisbon rivals, their encounters are always highly anticipated, but this particular fixture holds even more significance as Sporting currently sit at the top of the league table just three points in front of last season's Champions Benfica.

Benfica find themselves in a challenging position this season as they have struggled to maintain consistency and have fallen behind their arch-rivals in the title race. However, a victory against Sporting would see last seasons Champions reclaim the top spot but also provide a much-needed morale boost for the team.

The Estadio Da Luz will be buzzing with excitement as fans from both sides fill the stands to witness this intense battle. The atmosphere will be electric, with passionate supporters chanting and cheering for their respective teams. These derbies are known for their intensity and fierce competition on the pitch.

This match is not just about bragging rights; it has serious implications for both teams' aspirations this season. A win for Benfica would see them move into top spot and inject them with renewed confidence going forward. Conversely, a victory for Sporting would solidify their position as league leaders and put them six points ahead of their closest rival for the league crown.

Tune in tomorrow and watch how this game plays out, it should be an entertaining affair.

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Benfica finally score but exit from Champions League

Benfica Blog
Benfica finally found the back of the net in their fourth group stage game, but it unfortunately came when the club was already down by three goals, which proved too little and too late as the Lisbon side were handed their fourth straight loss of the competition and will not advance out of the group stage this season.

Benfica's only hope to remain active in Europe is if they can manage to wrestle a third spot away from Salzburg and make their way into the Europa League. With two games remaining in the competition and one of those games against the Austrian side, Benfica could still save some face in UEFA but they will need to get to work.

Benfica could not have started the game more poorly when their new 3-4-2-1 formation did little to spook Real Sociedad, who jumped to a two goal lead just eleven minutes into the contest on a pair of goals from Mikel Merino and Mikel Oyaezabal. An offside prevented the Spanish club from going up three just four minutes later, but a thunderous strike by Barrenetxea at the twenty-one minute mark put this game out of reach for good.

Benfica would score their first goal of the competition when Otamendi found Rafa Silva going to the net after a free kick gave Sociedad some problems, but that would be the only joy the club would see in this game as Sociedad would go on to win 3-1, ending Benfica's Champions League hopes.

Benfica now has two games remaining in the competition, a home contest against Inter Milan and a road game in Austria against RB Salzburg. The club's performances this season have left many fans in a bad place mentally, and not much is expected of the club going forward... how can it be?

Sunday, November 5, 2023

Benfica scoring woes continue in win

Benfica Blog
Benfica is currently facing a significant challenge in their offensive department. The team's goal-scoring struggles have persisted for a period of time now, leaving fans and pundits alike questioning the effectiveness of their front line. Although the club escaped with a win over Chaves yesterday, it took a lucky bounce and penalty to score their markers.

Despite boasting a talented squad with players like Rafa Silva and Angel di Maria, Benfica has failed to consistently find the back of the net for a long stretch of time. Their lackluster performances in front of goal have resulted in a bottom place in their Champions League group and a run of results that have seen them escape with victories in a lucky fashion.

The issue lies not only with individual players but also with the team's overall attacking strategy. Benfica has struggled to create clear-cut chances and convert them into goals. This lack of creativity and clinical finishing has hindered their game plan on multiple occasions and the press that did so well last season seems to have been poked full of holes.

In order to overcome this hurdle, Benfica must focus on improving their attacking patterns and enhancing their offensive cohesion as a unit. Additionally, they should explore alternative strategies such as utilizing wingers or midfielders to contribute to the attack.

While it may take time for these changes to yield results, Benfica remains determined to rectify their goal-scoring woes. With continued effort and strategic planning, they will eventually find that missing piece upfront that can elevate them back to the squad we have been accustomed to seeing during the 2022/23 season.

Thursday, November 2, 2023

Could Goncalo Guedes be the answer up front for Benfica

Benfica Blog
Goncalo Guedes, the 26 year old Portuguese talent, could just be the answer up front for Benfica, who have struggled to score goals consistently this season, especially in Champions League play.

While primarily deployed as a winger, there is growing speculation about whether he could be the answer to Benfica's search for a reliable striker after featuring in the role in the club's Taca da Liga encounter earlier this week and not looking out of place.

Guedes possesses all the attributes required to excel in a central role. His pace and agility allow him to outmaneuver defenders, while his excellent ball control and dribbling skills make him a nightmare for opposition defenses. Moreover, Guedes has shown great composure in front of goal throughout his career, displaying an innate ability to find the back of the net.

Furthermore, Guedes' versatility makes him an ideal candidate for the striker role. He can seamlessly switch positions with other attacking players and create space for himself or his teammates. This adaptability would give Benfica's attack an added dimension and keep opposition defenses guessing.

Guedes has all the potential to be Benfica's answer up front in the striker role. His skill set combined with his versatility make him an exciting option up front, and after coming back from two knee surgeries in the past year, the 26 year old may finally regaining his health to become the solution to the club's on going woes.


Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Angel di Maria continues to shine for Benfica

Benfica Blog
Angel di Maria has gotten off to the best start of his career with Benfica this season at the tender young age of 35. Di Maria scored the opening goal for Benfica yesterday in their 2-0 Taca da Liga win over Arouca off of a free kick, his second goal from a spot ball this season.

Di Maria leads Benfica in scoring to date in this campaign, with seven goals across all competitions in eleven games. He has also provided two helpers in that span. Di Maria has left no doubt that he is the star of this club and intends to maintain that role during the season.

Benfica are hoping that Di Maria's form can rub off on a squad that has struggled in Europe this season, with three games remaining in their group stage.

Sunday, October 29, 2023

David Neres will undergo knee surgery for extended absence

Benfica Blog
Benfica have lost winger David Neres for an extended period of time due to an injury to his meniscus in his left knee. The injury happened in yesterday's league game against Casa Pia, and will see the 26 year old go under the knife to repair the damage.

There has been no timeline given for the recovery time that Neres will need before he can return to action, but the injury is similar to the one sustained by Goncalo Guedes last season, which saw Guedes miss four months of action.

Neres is a big loss to a club that continues to struggle to score goals this season, having dropped points once again yesterday due to a lack of finish around the goal. He joins right back Alexander Bah and midfielder Orkun Kokcu in the infirmary.

Thursday, October 26, 2023

Benfica celebrate 20 years at the Luz with mural

On the day the Estadio da Luz celebrated 20 years, Benfica unveiled a new mural celebrating their most outstanding 20 players from the first two decades of the stadium opening as selected by the club's fans. 

Ederson, Jan Oblak, Nelson Semedo, Andre Almeida, Ezequiel Garay, Luisao, Ruben Dias, Nico Otamendi, Alex Grimaldo, Pablo Aimar, Rui Costa, Angel di Maria, Nico Gaitan, Eduardo Salvio, Simao Sabrosa, Rafa Silva, Oscar Cardozo, Nuno Gomes, Joao Felix and Jonas were the players chosen by the fans.

Ten players were present for the unveiling of the mural led by club President Rui Costa. Benfica's Estadio da Luz was opened on October 25, 2003 and was built from scratch as the main stadium of the Euro 2024 tournament being held in Portugal.


Wednesday, October 25, 2023

What is wrong with Benfica in Champions League?

Benfica Blog
Benfica's struggles in the Champions League this season hit an all-time high when they lost for the second time at home in the competition to keep a perfect record that no one wants to have. Benfica will now be known as the only club to be drawn from pot one in the Champions League to have gone with zero goals and zero points in their first three games of the group stage.

Benfica's chances to advance out of the group stage are currently slim and could be none when they face Real Sociedad away in Spain after suffering a flattering 1-0 loss at home to them just yesterday. Benfica have looked like a shell of last season's club that made a run to the quarterfinals, which some would say that a series of unfortunate events saw the club exit to last years finalists.

But what has happened to the club that has looked terrible in the competition? Looking at the players that currently remain with the club, you have Joao Mario and Rafa Silva, who are a shell of the players that put fright into clubs last season. The pair scored 11 goals between them.

The lack of usage of a true defensive midfielder has also proved costly, as the pair of Orkun Kokcu and Joao Neves are a far cry from last seasons generals Enzo Fernandez and Florentino, who commanded the middle of the field.

For all the accolades that Kokcu and Neves get for their league play, one needs to sit in place of Florentino, who, for reasons unknown, has fallen out of favour with his pig-headed bench boss Roger Schmidt.

Benfica have also failed to replace departing striker Goncalo Ramos, as the trio of Petar Musa, Casper Tengstedt, and Arthur Cabral have yet to step up and provide the pressure up front that Ramos became famous for.

The left back position is also a glaring hole in the squad, as the exit of Alex Grimaldo has cost the club some attacking flare, and the free kick specialist was also known for timely goals, which current replacements Juan Bernat and David Jurasek provide neither.

Benfica have three games to correct the ship, but an advancement from group play may be out of the club's hands at this point in the competition, they can only take it one game at a time and hope for a return to form quickly, but I won't hold my breathe, and neither should you at this juncture.

Sunday, October 22, 2023

Benfica awaiting response on trio of injured players

Benfica Blog
Benfica have a very important Champions League encounter on Tuesday when they host Spanish club Real Sociedad, Benfica are still looking for their first points of this seasons campaign in a game that has turned into a must win for the Eagles.

Benfica looks set to go into the game missing three of their regular starters with Angel di Maria, Orkun Kokcu and Alexander Bah all recovery from injuries, the trio have yet to complete a full training with the club since before the international break.

Benfica's medical department will re-evaluate the players today in Seixal but manager Roger Schmidt is in no hurry to use the trio unless they are given the green light to play as he looks to avoid a relapse in their injuries.

The club knows the importance of Tuesday's game and will look for others on the squad to step up in their absences.


Friday, October 20, 2023

Benfica put on a show in Azores in Taca de Portugal encounter

Benfica Blog
Benfica traveled to the Azores island of Terceira to take on Lusitania in their third round Taca de Portugal match up and showed their prowess in a resounding 4-1 victory over their over matched foes. Benfica scored a pair of goals in each half with their opponents chipping in a goal from the penalty spot just before the end of the first half.

Benfica got goals from four different marksmen with Joao Mario, Rafa Silva, Arthur Cabral and Tiago Gouveia all finding their names on the game sheet. With the victory Benfica now advance to the fourth round of the Taca de Portugal and await to find out their next opponents in this prestigious tournament.

Tuesday, October 17, 2023

Fenerbahce looking at Benfica midfielder Florentino

Benfica Blog
Current Turkish League leaders Fenerbahce are looking to reinforce their midfield with a defensive minded player and have their eyes on Benfica midfielder Florentino according to CNN Turkey.

Fenerbahce manager Ismail Kartal has presented the board with a list of midfielders he likes and highlighted on that list is the name of Florentino Luis. The 24 year old has been a long time favourite of the Turkish side but Benfica's current financial demands have continued to be a stumbling block in making the move possible.

Florentino is signed with Benfica until the summer of 2027 and has a buy clause of €120M, current Benfica bench boss Roger Schmidt is against moving the midfielder who he feels is a valuable part of the club.

Fenerbahce have their work cut out for them if they are to land this coveted player and do not seem to have the financial might to make this move happen.


Sunday, October 15, 2023

Benfica prepare for third round Taca de Portugal encounter

Benfica Blog

Benfica are gearing up for their third round Taca de Portugal encounter against Azores club Lusitania on Friday in the picturesque island of Terceira, in what amounts to a battle between David and Goliath once again.

The match looks set to be a spectacle of football taking place in the small island of just over 53,000 people between two clubs with contrasting backgrounds but equal ambitions to advance.

Lusitania will be flying in over 40 sports venue assistants from the mainland of Portugal due to the logistics of hosting the defending league Champions and Portugal's most popular club at the Estadio John Paul II which normally holds 7,000 fans.

This will set the club back $20,000 to cover all accommodations for these workers but it will be worth the media coverage and free advertisement that the brand will receive from such a big match.

Benfica will be looking for nothing short then advancing to the next round and have their focus on making a run to the final to capture a trophy that has alluded them since the 2016/17 season.


Friday, October 13, 2023

Rosario Central want Di Maria next season

Benfica Blog
Argentinian club Rosario Central are hoping to land Benfica winger Angel di Maria next season once he becomes a free agent in hopes of having Di Maria end his career where it started. Rosario's sporting director Federico Lussenhoff spoke earlier today about preparing the right conditions to bring Di Maria back next summer.

Benfica acquired the talented Di Maria from Rosario Central in the summer of 2007 for €8M and the 35 year old spent three seasons with Benfica before departing and joining Real Madrid. Di Maria's career has taken him through Manchester United, PSG and Juventus before returning to Benfica this summer. 

Tuesday, October 10, 2023

Benfica need to give Cabral more time to adapt to club

Benfica made a significant signing this summer when they acquired striker Arthur Cabral from Fiorentina for €20M to replace departing striker Goncalo Ramos who moved on to join PSG. 

However since his arrival Cabral has struggled to find his footing and has yet to score or provide a helper in the limited time that he has appeared in games.

Benfica manager Roger Schmidt has continued to shuffle between Cabral, Petar Musa and Casper Tengstedt as he looks to find the piece that can replace what the club lost with departure of Ramos. 

Cabral has appeared in 230 minutes of the 900 minutes that the club has played this season, which does not bode well for the striker as he looks to adapt to his new club and teammates.

Benfica need to give their summer acquisition regular playing minutes if we are to see what he can bring to the club as if Cabral is to build chemistry with his new teammates he will actually need to be on the pitch with them.

Benfica should look to include Cabral against the leagues minnows more regularly in the hopes that he can provide the club with what they first saw when acquiring the 25 year old this past summer.

Sunday, October 8, 2023

Benfica injuries starting to mount

Benfica Blog
Benfica are under an injury alert stage of the season as three regular starters hit the infirmary within a few days during this past week. Benfica have lost right back Alexander Bah, midfielder Orkun Kokcu and winger Angel di Maria to injury.

All three players injuries are not deemed to be serious and the trio should not miss extended periods of time but the injuries are serious enough that both Bah and Di Maria will not report for international duty while Kokcu looks to be following suit.

Thursday, October 5, 2023

Benfica looking at Boavista right back

Benfica Blog
Benfica are currently looking to make a move for a right back when the winter transfer window opens up in January as the club currently lacks anyone to back up current starter Alexander Bah who has struggled to stay healthy in the first few months of the season.

Reports from Portugal have Benfica linked with a move to acquire U21 International Pedro Malheiro from Boavista. The 22 year old has been Boavista's regular starter at right back since half way through last season and has appeared in 60 games across all competitions for the northern Portugal club, scoring twice while providing seven helpers.

This move for Malheiro should be cost efficient and give the club the coverage that they are currently lacking since the departure of Gilberto in the summer to Brazil.