Monday, March 13, 2023

Benfica could look within league for new left back

Benfica Blog
Benfica may need to look at replacing current starting left back Alex Grimaldo at seasons end when the Spaniard is set to become a free agent, as the club and 27 year old have yet to come to an agreement on a new contract with the seasoning entering its final third. Benfica acquired left back Mihailo Ristic this past summer but the 27 year old has seen limited action in part to injuries and in part to Grimaldo's fine form this season.

If Benfica are unable to reach an agreement with Grimaldo the club could follow the example of their league rivals and look to acquire a player for a discounted price from inside their respective league. There are a pair of league players who could compete with Ristic for a spot in the starting XI next season and Benfica manager Roger Schmidt may just be able to work some magic a la Joao Mario with one of the two players below.

Leonardo Lelo - Casa Pia - 22 years old

Lelo has had a fantastic season for Casa Pia and has caught the attention of Portuguese clubs, he has appeared in 17 league games, scoring one goal while setting up three. Lelo came up through Olhanense's youth system and has recently received a call up to Portugal's Under 21 squad. Lelo is a complete left back who can take set pieces and has excellent crosses into the box.

Ricardo Mangas - Boavista - 24 years old

Mangas is a former Seixal academy product, so the club has some familiarity with the player, he has appeared in 19 league games this season, scoring two goals. Mangas spent last season on loan with French club Bordeaux where he was regular starter but was returned back to Boavista at seasons end after the French sides relegation. Mangas has a good first touch and speed that allows him to be dangerous in the attacking zone.

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