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Friday, 14 October 2011 21:23

Taca: Portimonense 0-2 Benfica

Eagles ease into 4th Round

A new-look Benfica cruised past Portimonense and into the 4th round of the Taca de Portugal this evening, in an entertaining but one-sided encounter. Bruno Cesar opened the scoring with a precise free kick after an hour of Benfica pressure, and youngster Rodrigo Moreno opened his account for the Eagles thirteen minutes later. 

With a packed schedule on the horizon, Jorge Jesus made wholesale changes to his starting eleven. Eduardo, Miguel Vitor, Capdevila, Matic, David Simao, Rodrigo and Nelson Oliveira were all handed starts, whilst six starters (Artur, Maxi, Javi Garcia, Aimar, Gaitan and Cardozo) were left out altogether. Portimonense fielded a line-up that bore the marks of relegation: only Ruben Fernandes and captain Ricardo Pessoa played any major part in their brief Liga stay.

Unsurprisingly given the gulf in class between the two sides, the match soon settled into a basic pattern, with Benfica enjoying all the possession and most of the chances; and Portimonense looking to absorb the pressure and strike on the counter. Youngsters David Simao and Nelson Oliveira, who spent 2010/11 on loan together at Pacos, combined well for the first clear-cut chance, but the latter dragged his shot just wide of the post. Eduardo had to scramble soon after when Fabricio delivered a low effort from the edge of the box, but for the most part, Portimonense found themselves pinned back deep in their own half.

One of the most interesting selections from Jorge Jesus was Joan Capdevila. The World and European champion was expected to be a starter at the Luz, but has found opportunities nigh on impossible to come by. The Spaniard almost delivered the perfect riposte to his coach in the 18th minute, but his thunderous low free kick crashed off the post, with Goda stranded.

Another of Benfica’s left-footers forced the Portimonense goalkeeper into a smart save: Nemanja Matic found himself forward and in space, and unleashed a crisp drive, but the shot was straight at the Portimonense number one.

Benfica did put the ball in the net seven minutes before half time, when Nolito danced along the touchline and tapped home; but the number nine had been flagged offside, and received a caution from Joao Ferreira for ignoring the linesman’s whistle. The interval arrived with the teams still level, but Benfica well ahead in the possession stakes: 75% to 25%.

Not wishing to take any chances, Jorge Jesus withdrew Nelson Oliveira for the second half, with Javier Saviola replacing the youngster. Luisao almost opened the scoring with a powerful header in the opening minute, but the opener didn’t arrive until the hour mark, by which time Axel Witsel had also made his entrance.

The goal itself was simple enough. Bruno Cesar, an energetic creative presence throughout, swept a left-footed free kick from an acute angle beyond Goda and into the net. The Brazilian is slowly but surely becoming a key player for Jorge Jesus, and will continue to do so as the season progresses and the need for rotation increases.

Cesar turned provider for Benfica’s second, splitting the Portimonense back line asunder with a perfectly weighted through ball for the onrushing Rodrigo; who calmly side-footed home. The return of the former Real Madrid youngster to the Luz has been much anticipated by many, particularly since his impressive displays for the Spanish Under-20 side this summer. His cool, first-time finish after an intelligent run and intuitive shift in stance as he bore down on goal bore all the hallmarks of a fine player in the making.

Having been breached, Portimonense offered little in the way of attacking threat during the final minutes, though Ben Traore did beat his marker to head just wide from the edge of the box. Substitute Rodrigo Mora added a third for Benfica, but his tap-in was correctly ruled out for offside.

[0-1] Bruno Cesar, 59’
[0-2] Rodrigo Moreno, 72’

Portimonense: Jules Goda; Ricardo Pessoa, Eliezio, Ruben Fernandes, Ricardo Nunes; Semedo, Wakaso (Organista, 80’); Jonas (Traore, 65’), Vitor Goncalves, Fabricio (Simmy, 62’); Rafa.

Benfica: Eduardo; Miguel Vitor, Luisao, Garay, Capdevila; Matic, Bruno Cesar, David Simao (Axel Witsel, 55’), Nolito; Rodrigo Moreno, Nelson Oliveira (Javier Saviola, 45’).

Ben Shave

Comments (4)
Sou um jovem de 18 anos e jogo futebol e gostaria de poder fazer um texte no time !
4 Tuesday, 18 October 2011 20:59
Nome: Éwerton Moura Dias
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Telefone, celular : 9974-4242
Idade:18 anos
Altura: 1,80 mc
Posição: Zagueiro , Cabeça de Area , Lateral Direito
Nacionalidade : Brasil
Estado: Espirito Santo
Cidade: Cachoeiro de Itapemirim ( Cidade do Rei Roberto Carlos )
Bairro: São Luiz Gonzaga
Rua: Luiz Gonzaga de Oliveira , N 6
Muito Obrigado !!!
Que DEUS abençoe a vocês todos !!!
Estou aguardando !!!
Quero se torna um grande jogador de Futibol, e esse é meu Sonho !!!
3 Saturday, 15 October 2011 19:43
Great game for the youngsters. Dominating possession and should of atleast been 4-0.
Well done
2 Saturday, 15 October 2011 12:31
By JJ to give many of the players who have been on the bench a start and some action, particularly with the CL next week...and it couldn't have gone smoother...Rodrigo getting his first goal and Capdevila, Matic, Miguel Vitor and Cesar putting in really good performances. We really have great strength in depth in this squad. I hope Capdevila gets some more games coming up so as to start feeling like part of the team, because we could really use his vast experience in the latter stages of this season.

And Eduardo...to all those who think his lack of first team opportunity is justification for not starting for the seleccao...I have to say he didn't look affected in the slightest last night by his lack of games so far. I know it was only the Taca de Portugal...but he looked confident as ever last night.

I'm sorry, in my opinion, you can almost see just in the facial expression of a keeper how confident and calm he is...Patricio looks to me like a keeper who is worried about a goal getting past him, Eduardo in contrast looks like a keeper confident of dealing with anything that comes his way...full stop. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that Eduardo should start for the seleccao, despite so far not being first choice at SLB. Will it happen though? I doubt it. Anyway great to see Benfica carrying on going from strength to strength...
Portuguese youth
1 Saturday, 15 October 2011 01:18
It is important that the big sides in Portugal allow for at least two Portuguese youngsters to particpate in as many games as possible......or else we will struggle to find quality players for the national teams

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