Benfica 1-1 FC Porto

Sporting have been left just two points away from clinching the Primeira Liga title after Benfica and second-placed FC Porto played out a dramatic 1-1 draw at the Estádio da Luz, this evening.

Everton Cebolinha broke the deadlock for Benfica in Lisbon in a game the hosts needed to win to strengthen their chances of automatic Champions League qualification, sitting four points behind their opponents before kick-off.

A second-half strike for Matheus Uribe levelled the game for Porto, in search of a win to claw themselves back into the title race, before late drama with a disallowed Pizzi goal that had threatened to undermine the Dragons’ season.

The 1-1 draw, leaving Porto eight points behind table-topping Sporting, all but kills their hopes of becoming back-to-back champions, meanwhile Benfica’s ambitions of climbing up to second also take a big hit with just three league games of the season to go.

For the showdown at the Luz, Jorge Jesús reverted to a familiar five-man defence, filled up by Lucas Veríssimo, Jan Vertonghen and Nicolás Otamendi, meanwhile Porto, in their standard 4-4-2, covered Jesús Corona’s absence with Luis Diaz and Otavio operating on the flanks.

In a cagey affair, it took Porto 20 minutes to really widen the eyes with a goalscoring opportunity after Marega was set free down the right channel before feeding Mehdi Taremi with a cross - one that would bounce awkwardly behind his outstretched leg at the time of execution.

Benfica’s response was a prompt and clinical one as Everton wriggled through the Porto set-up, with Pizzi’s help, before deceiving Augustin Marchesín with a curled effort in at the near post, breaking the deadlock in the 23rd minute. 

The visitors resumed their wait for a mere shot on target in the 35th minute, threatening through Taremi’s blocked shot on the swivel that was succeeded by a powerful volley by Uribe inside the box, floating high and over the bar.

Benfica came close to landing a bitter blow to Porto on the brink of half time after a quick break that saw Rafa Silva initially earn a penalty up against Wilson Manafá, only for the VAR to catch the Eagles forward offside and cancel out the spot-kick.

Sérgio Conceição’s men were dealt a similar scare ten minutes into the second period after Diogo Gonçalves tried to rake in another penalty, having collided with Zaidu Sanusi inside the box, but the VAR wasn’t to be convinced by the home side’s pleas once more.

The Porto manager backed João Mário to breathe new life into the game and the young Portuguese man repaid the faith shown in him just five minutes later, skipping by Haris Seferovic down the right flank before assisting Uribe for the equaliser, finding the top corner via a cut-back in the 75th minute.

With a 1-1 draw no good for either side, Benfica came whiskers away from making the most of a frenetic end to the game, with Darwin Nuñez feeding Adel Taarabt on the edge of the box before the Moroccan’s strike ricocheted under Marchesín and onto the bar.

The Eagles thought they had dramatically gone one better in the 93rd minute, firing ahead through Pizzi’s accurate strike across goal, but, yet again, the VAR was there to pour rain on the hosts’ parade and spot an offside in the build-up.

With both sides locked level at 1-1 come full time, Sporting, now eight points clear of second-placed Porto, require just a win to seal the Primeira Liga title.

By Patrick Ribeiro

Benfica XI: Helton Leite - Jan Vertonghen, Nicolás Otamendi, Lucas Veríssimo - Alex Grimaldo, Julian Weigl (Gabriel, 68’), Pizzi, Diogo Gonçalves - Everton Cebolinha (Darwin Nuñez, 85’), Rafa Silva (Adel Taarabt, 68’), Haris Seferovic

FC Porto XI: Augustin Marchesín - Zaidu Sanusi (João Mário, 69’), Pepe, Chancel Mbemba, Wilson Manafá - Luis Diaz, Sérgio Oliveira (Francisco Conceição, 83’), Matheus Uribe, Otávio - Mehdi Taremi (Evanilson, 83’), Moussa Marega (Toni Martinez, 69’)

 

Goals:

[1-0] - Everton Cebolinha (23’)

[1-1] - Matheus Uribe (75’)

Comments (12)

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What an absolute joke of a match. The referee came to this match to do 1 thing only: make sure porto don't lose. I hope whatever amount of money porto paid him was worth it.

How some people on this site still believe Benfica is more favoured...

What an absolute joke of a match. The referee came to this match to do 1 thing only: make sure porto don't lose. I hope whatever amount of money porto paid him was worth it.

How some people on this site still believe Benfica is more favoured and helped by refs than Porto absolutely blows my mind. Porto always have and always will be helped by the Portuguese refs, especially against Benfica.

Im not complaining about the disallowed goal or penalties as they were rightfully taken away, but everything else he did was abysmal. I don't even know where to start, there was so much crap called in this game that I probably forgot a bunch.
The free kick that gave benfica 2 players alone vs the goalie was disallowed for what? Its Benficas fault that Porto could not defend it? also, how the hell did Pepe not get a second yellow for that foul? Gabriel got a yellow just minutes later for the exact same foul, but when Pepe did it, it was only a foul and not a second yellow? Why did Weigl receive a yellow when he did nothing more than a simple foul? Porto got away with everything while any time a porto player fell Benfica would get carded. There was also a clear handball on the edge of the box not given of course. This same bullshit referee also didn't call a handball the last time these 2 teams played which would have resulted in a penalty, and he made the same mistake today. Also, how many times did Porto get a throw in or a corner when it went out off of their own player? At least 2 or 3 which is way more than it ever should be.

I would love to hear what bullshit excuses Porto fans can come up with for why the ref was actually brilliant today and didn't completely ruin this match.

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What an absolute joke of a match. The referee came to this match to do 1 thing only; make sure Porto don't lose, and he did that very well. I guess Porto are still bribing the refs as usual?

How some people on this site actually still believe...

What an absolute joke of a match. The referee came to this match to do 1 thing only; make sure Porto don't lose, and he did that very well. I guess Porto are still bribing the refs as usual?

How some people on this site actually still believe that Benfica is more favoured and helped by the refs than Porto just blows my mind. Porto have always and will always be helped by the refs in Portugal, especially against Benfica.

Im not complaining about the disallowed goal or penalties as they were rightfully taken away, but every other decision made by the ref today was abysmal and always in favour of Porto. There was so much bullshit in this match that I probably forgot a bunch of stuff.

Lets start with the free kick Benfica took quickly and got a 2 vs 1 against the goalie (and they put it in the net too). Why didn't it count and why did it have to be retaken? Ill tell you why, Porto would have conceded a goal otherwise and the ref wouldn't want that, now would he? Absolutely no reason it had to be retaken. Is Benfica supposed to wait for Porto to be ready to defend it? Its apparently Benfica's fault that Porto were not able to defend it so it had to be retaken? Also, why didn't Pepe get a yellow for that foul for stepping on the players foot? It would have been a second yellow and it would have taken out Portos only good defender. Maybe the ref didn't think it was worthy of yellow then, which I would be fine with if he didn't give Gabriel a yellow card for the EXACT same foul just a couple minutes later. This moment alone ruined the whole match and showed the entire world who the ref was cheering for.

Why was Weigl given a yellow card? It was a simple normal foul and nothing more. It was also his first foul, so it couldn't be an accumulation of fouls that led to the yellow card, which Otavio should have received for committing 3 fouls in the first 13 minutes of the match! Also, how many times did Porto get a thrown in or corner when the ball went out of play off of their own player? 3 times that I can remember which is ridiculous that it even happen once, let alone multiple times. There was also a clear handball on the edge of the box (that would have been a dangerous free kick opportunity) that of course was not given. Neither the ref or linesman were able to see it. This is the same bullshit ref that didn't call a very obvious handball against Porto to give Benfica a penalty in a recent match between these two teams. He made the same stupid mistake (in favour of the same team both times of course) twice in a row. Porto got away with everything and every time a Porto player fell, a Benfica player would get carded. How is this ref not fired yet?

I would love to hear what bullshit excuses these deluded Porto fans can come with to explain how the ref was actually brilliant today and how he did not ruin this match in any way. If you still think Porto are not the most favoured and helped team in Portugal by the refs then you are truly just a deluded and extremely biased fan or a troll,

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Once again it shows, O Papa é quem manda.

This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

Porto Fans - The Refs are always rigging the games for Benfica

Benfica Fans - The Refs are always rigging games for Porto

Neutral Fans - Watching grown men and woman blame the refs every time they lose is hilarious and pathetic at the same...

Porto Fans - The Refs are always rigging the games for Benfica

Benfica Fans - The Refs are always rigging games for Porto

Neutral Fans - Watching grown men and woman blame the refs every time they lose is hilarious and pathetic at the same time. Real winners and champions dont make excuses and cry when they lose. They take it on the chin and grow and get better. Hopefully the fans and coaches of both these clubs can learn this or Liga Nos and its top clubs will continue to be ignored and disrespected by the rest of world football. Two former great world football clubs who now sell all the young aspring Portuguese talent or leave them on the bench for players they bring over from south america and then lose the league to a team with a rookie coach who plays a starting lineup of almost all homegrown talent and half of them teenagers or early 20s.

Must have been because of the refs though....................

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I have to disagree with the sentiment here. This happens all over the world for every club and selection of all of their fans do the same thing. True a lot of fans are blinkered by their support of the club but I wouldn't say most neutral fans...

I have to disagree with the sentiment here. This happens all over the world for every club and selection of all of their fans do the same thing. True a lot of fans are blinkered by their support of the club but I wouldn't say most neutral fans are sitting back laughing at them, more often than not the neutral fan gives a balanced overview of the refereeing.

The selling of players is obviously because of market conditions, no Portuguese club can compete with the money of the premier league for example. Sporting have done well with Ruben, and I don't think the comments here are saying they won the league because of refereeing. Also I would also not describe him as a rookie. The word suggest this is his first time in management, it is not.

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Well he had half a season at Braga and then half a season at Sporting and this is the first ever full season where he has coached the same players from start to finish so yah that is pretty close to a rookie. Before this he never even had his...

Well he had half a season at Braga and then half a season at Sporting and this is the first ever full season where he has coached the same players from start to finish so yah that is pretty close to a rookie. Before this he never even had his coaching license so not sure where your getting his vast past experience from. Also everyone is entitled to there own opinion but lets not pretend like the reason is financial. The reason is poor management. Manchester United were also not a big club until Sir Alex got there. He built with the youth team and made them champions. That attracted investment and then the dynasty followed after that. And even after they were one of the richest clubs they still in truth built off relatively cheap youth signings like Rooney and Ronaldo. It doesnt take the kind of money many people think to build a good team. It takes a visionary and intelligent approach by the owner all the way down to the management and trainers of the club. Portuguese youth system has much more talent imo then england. No reason they cant do something similar. Also in regards to other fans complaining just because others do it doesnt make it right. And I said fans and coaches and its the ladder which have the most impact on the team. This is the porblem with football and our general society. Nobody is ever at fault. Everything is always somebody elses fault. Theres 90 minutes in a soccer game. Very rarely do the refs dictate the score line any more then teams blowing chances are costing themselves with bad coaching tactics. Just this game in particular Porto and Benfica had plenty of opportunites to seal the game and they didnt take advantage. They are much more the reason for the draw then any missed call by the ref

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At no point did I say he was vastly experience I said he is not a rookie but never mind I should not expect a reasonable response from someone on the internet.

Manchester United were not a big club before Fergie? I cannot disagree with that...

At no point did I say he was vastly experience I said he is not a rookie but never mind I should not expect a reasonable response from someone on the internet.

Manchester United were not a big club before Fergie? I cannot disagree with that strongly enough. You have heard of the Busby babes and the Munich air disaster? The first English side to win he European cup the second British side. United were a massive team down on their luck before Fergie arrived but they were still massive. He is also overly credited for building the youth team, a lot of that work was done by Eric Harrison. Fergie brought them up to the first team for sure and brought them to be fantastic players but he didn't build the youth team, and I say this as a Scot with massive respect for Ferguson.

Rooney cost united almost £27 million in 2004. Ferguson spent £1.8 million or Mark Hughes in 1988! Yorke was over 12 million in the mid 90s as well. Ruud was around £19 Million and Veron was closer to £30 million. These are not cheap players for sure. I wont argue that Ferguson did a lot to build United up but he still at those times had a lot more money than the big Portuguese clubs.

Yes I would say the Portuguese youth system is more technically talented than that in England, but very rarely do English sides develop the young players or give them a chance, look at Foden at City, he is only just getting into the team. Sancho obviously had to leave England to develop as a player.

I would be much happier if Portuguese teams could keep their talent but they cannot, Sporting will not be able to keep hold of their very talented young players that is for sure. Also I really have not agreed with bringing back Jesus and his transfer policy at Benfica, I would much rather see talent come through than some pretty decent Brazilian taking his place.

Finally I never said that either team lost the game because of the refs I simply stated that fans getting upset by refs happens all over the world, not just Benfica and Porto fans and that I do not believe most neutral fans are sitting laughing at them. Maybe fans that claim to be neutral but in fact cannot be because they support a rival of these teams.... Like a Sporting fan taking great delight in Benfica being terrible and trying to wind up their fans, or a Rangers fan really enjoying Celtic absolutely tanking.

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Well your right Amorim has been a coach a full 1 season before this. That is inexperienced. Simple as that. He was playing for Benfica 3 or 4 years ago......AS A MIDFIELDER. If you dont think a 36 year old who just started coaching last year is...

Well your right Amorim has been a coach a full 1 season before this. That is inexperienced. Simple as that. He was playing for Benfica 3 or 4 years ago......AS A MIDFIELDER. If you dont think a 36 year old who just started coaching last year is not inexperienced so be it I will not argue about it.

As for United you just restated what i said. Most of those guys he bought were after he had already got United to the top with the class of 92 and the money started coming in. How does Manu U being good a decade or more before Ferguson got there change anything? When he took over were they good? No. If Leeds somehow won the league this year would we disregard Bielsa because he must have had an easy job because Leeds used to be one of the biggest clubs in the world decades before he got there. Your point makes no sense. Ferguson did bring back United from the bottom with kids from the academy. Simple as that. It can be done

In regards to Portuguese teams that perspective I continue to hear from you and others is complete nonsense and goes against actual numbers. Anyone with simple mathematics skills can realize the cheapest way for a Portuguese team to run would be through academy. Cheap salaries and no buy fees. Then you sell a few for big bucks when there's a budding youngster behind him who could fill that spot without a huge drop-off. Its not rocket science.

Last time I checked Benfica last won the league with a bunch of kids from the academy. That team was dirt cheap to finance. Then not only that but they made millions off the league title and champions league promotion and then another 170 million off Felix and dias who were put on everyone's radar. Then instead of continuing the process again and just replacing with new kids like Dantas or Gedson or Ramos etc they sell them and bring JJ in and blow over 100 million on a bunch of high priced players who haven't done anything and now cant pay salaries just to finish worse then the season before which caused the whole blow up of the youth experiment.

Now you tell me which one is cheaper and more sustainable? Portuguese league is just a scam for the agents and shady owners to scoop up millions on the Portuguese transfers to other clubs. That's the reason teams aren't run with any vision for future sustainability. Just Felix 120 million or Dias 50 million could of paid the salaries of these promoted youth players for the next 5 years. Then because of the quality in the system every year or so a Nuno Mendes and pote comes along and you make millions more and keep restocking the system.

Instead you pay millions to bring over high priced players who also demand much higher salaries then academy callups. The numbers dont add up. The above average players like Oliveira and Paulihna and Pizzi will always love to stay and play in Portugal even during there prime and you got them without paying any transfer fee. Then yes when you do get superstars like Felix and Nuno you enjoy them for a few years and then sell them off for millions and reinvest smartly back into the system to bring in more cheap young talent to nurture with the top trainers we have. Thats a sustainable and profitable and much more reliable system IMHO. Mix in the fact Portugal always has some of the top coaches in the world for the Big 3 to choose from and all 3 could easily take turns winning the league while also competing respectably in Europe every year and keeping Portugal at there Coefficient so all 3 have a shot at Champions league money every year and are also much more profitable in the long term

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OK keyboard warrior, keep missing the points I am making and getting yourself worked up.

You are clearly the wisest man who knows all things about football!

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Yes Pepe should have gotten a second yellow. But SC also got 3 weeks suspension on previous game and was back on the bench.
Anyway 2 points away baby.

Aonde vai um vao todos!!

Majority of players are from our academy, no 100 M spent here.

I...

Yes Pepe should have gotten a second yellow. But SC also got 3 weeks suspension on previous game and was back on the bench.
Anyway 2 points away baby.

Aonde vai um vao todos!!

Majority of players are from our academy, no 100 M spent here.

I have had champagne on ice for 19 years hope is still good lol

FORCA SPORTING!!!

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Wow, lots of spicy takes here, meaning one thing:

It's a big year with a lot of tension and pressure because there's a lot on the line.

Regarding the Referee criticism, the calls were actually all made by VAR, and they were super close but I...

Wow, lots of spicy takes here, meaning one thing:

It's a big year with a lot of tension and pressure because there's a lot on the line.

Regarding the Referee criticism, the calls were actually all made by VAR, and they were super close but I think most were ultimately correct.

I wouldn't argue if that tackle on Rafa had been called a penalty, that kind of tackle is always a PK, but the issue was that it was offside.

Anyways, in general, I don't think the scrutiny and negativity the officials have gotten over the last 4-6 years has been good, so best to leave it there. All 3 big clubs get the calls, of that there is no argument.

I thought Porto looked like a wound up golden retriever running all over the place with very little efficiency. Benfica looked less involved but much more clinical. It was not the best Classico to watch for sure.

Ultimately, this cements Sporting's title, which has been deserved.

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My one criticism of the referring in this game was ASD not ejecting Pepe for a second yellow around the third minute. Only 2-3 weeks ago, this very same official gave two bookings to Goncalo Inacio within 18 minutes of the first half against...

My one criticism of the referring in this game was ASD not ejecting Pepe for a second yellow around the third minute. Only 2-3 weeks ago, this very same official gave two bookings to Goncalo Inacio within 18 minutes of the first half against Braga , and that was done for much less than what Pepe committed. Thankfully, SCP still managed to win the game.

Porto was imo slightly better in this game but a draw was a fair result.

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