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Saturday, 14 April 2012 08:00

Benfica win Taça da Liga

Benfica 2-1 Gil Vicente

SaviolaForgotten man Javier Saviola came off the bench to score the winning goal with his first touch as Benfica lifted their fourth successive Taça da Liga in the final in Coimbra tonight. Rodrigo had given Benfica a half-time lead, but Ze Luis's equaliser in the 78th minute raised the spectre of a penalty shoot-out. Saviola had other ideas.

Eduardo, Maxi Pereira, Garay, Jardel, Capdevila, Matic, Witsel, Aimar (Cardozo, 62), Bruno Cesar, Rodrigo (Saviola, 82), Nelson Oliveira (Gaitan, HT)

Adriano, Rodrigo Galo, Claudio, Hallisson, Junior Caicara, Luis Manuel (Jose Luis, 56), Andre Cunha, Richard (Joao Vilela, 76), Cesar Peixoto, Luis Carlos (Guilherme, 67), Hugo Vieira

[1-0] Rodrigo, 30
[1-1] Ze Luiz, 78
[2-1] Saviola, 82


As it happened

Comments (24)
De Jong
24 Wednesday, 18 April 2012 16:44
De Jong would be excellent for us, I don't know if we could afford his wages...perhaps for just a season long loan he would accept a wage cut in return for regular first-team football. If Man City make serious offers for either Gaitan or Garcia, we should try and bargain De Jong in with the deal for a season long loan. Imagine him and Axel in the same team, we'd have a combination of steel and intelligence in the middle of the park, which would make us a lot better defensively...and allow us much more safety to play our normal attacking game..
23 Tuesday, 17 April 2012 18:52
Sorry, meant to say DeJong is interesting.
auto spell got me. Lol
here comes silly season
22 Tuesday, 17 April 2012 14:25
I would look at the deal as 20 mil plus Macheda. Fabio would be a seperate loan deal.
I happen to like Fabio and think he would bring depth and fits our style of play.
Macheda is more of a Cardozo type. If anything he's been a bit of a disappointment. Then again with Rooney being more of a mid, only Welbeck has showed well this season. I haven't looked into Machedas stats since he's on loan.

What I am positive of is that i don't want Essian. He's was s great player who's age and injuries have caught up with him.
I know Kalou has also been mentioned, but he'll sulk. Inflated ego for a guy that disappeares a ton. We already have that with Nico.

Deming is interesting.
Re: Gaitan deal
21 Tuesday, 17 April 2012 11:35
I must say that I hope these are just rumours regarding the Gaitan deal to Man United and Fabio and Macheda coming to us. Personally I wouldn't want either of those players, and neither are quite good enough for Benfica, with all due respect, and I'm sure both would just be on the bench next season anyway. I would like to see us play hard bargain for Gaitan, and make sure we don't end up losing him for less than we should, just as what happened with Di Maria.

If Man United are not willing to pay up what Gaitan is worth, then we must negotiate with other teams who will, such as Man City or Chelsea. Both of these have many quality players that could be used in the deal that would benefit our team.

What we really need the most, imo, is some steel and power in our defensive-midfield. A good deal for us, for example, would be to get Nigel De Jong on loan for a season as part of Gaitan moving to City. Or if it was Chelsea, perhaps Michael Essien or Obi Mikel for a season's loan. Either De Jong or Essien or Obi Mikel could give us the steel in midfield and protection of our defence next season that has been missing all of this season. None of these 3 players are regulars in their first team, and any of them could be a realistic deal for us, if it were for just a season long loan, in relation to Gaitan moving in the opposite direction. LFV, I hope you're reading this LOL!!
20 Tuesday, 17 April 2012 04:50

So 20 million pounds plus Fabio & Macheda for Nico? Not a bad bit of business for Benfica. Although I would've liked Fabio to be a permanent deal, but it seems it's just a loan.

But with Macheda coming in it means Benfica will have a ton of strikers, so I'm guessing there will be some movement.
@gary toronto
19 Monday, 16 April 2012 14:42
Gary, football is a business, we are in the business of winning, I work in sales and when we have a huge deal to get done we dont send rookies to close it!!!!
Our rookies start in the office and go to small deals to learn and when they screw up its not a big deal because is small.
So euro cup is a big deal lets not send rookies to do a pro's job.
Like I say he can train in the minor leagues and work towards prime time in Benfica, when he gets a permanent spot in benfica and builds a resume then we can talk.
This is not a Benfica/Sporting thing is a National team thing and to close the deal we need our best.
I have nothing against the player I dont even know him, I call at as I see it and it is your right to disagree.
I hope I can see him in Brasil in 2 years I will be there to cheer him and our great country.
Viva Portugal!!!
18 Monday, 16 April 2012 11:01
Eddie, I'm glad you're not running Benfica.
Nelson would have scored and/or created a goal for sure? Really? He didn't all game verse Olhanense.
He should be 2nd choice? Again, really? We played with a 1 striker formation for most of the season. Rodrigo played great when given the chance. You forgot to mention him.
I would agree that you gain experience by playing but this was Nelson's first season with the club. He is gaining experience through training and sitting. He's obviously highly rated, especially for not getting loaned out.

People need to relax. Cardozo isn't always pretty but his scoring record stands on its own. Saviola will be gone and Rodrigo might be as well. If anything JJ will have to rotate the players better next season. We are too deep a squad to have tired this much. The opportunities will come.
you know...
17 Monday, 16 April 2012 02:18
i was exactly like you guys when i was HATING on ronaldo in euro 2004 when he was "killing it" for us and not passing to anybody most of the time. boy did i eat my words LOL
LOL! This Antonio guy is killing me!
16 Monday, 16 April 2012 01:25
What better way to grow and get better acquainted with the national team, then actually being part of the Euro squad!? Let him get the experience NOW rather than later. You got some hate for Nelson in you. LOL!
15 Sunday, 15 April 2012 22:39
How does a player gain maturity? This is a practical sport. Can he get maturity by sitting in Benfica's class rooms and practice fields watching diagrams and doing little drills and practice games? Yes this is a game of intelligence and wit, but everybody who has played the game knows that, to be comfortable and become experienced ie. playing smart making good decisions and moves etc, you have to do it on the field. A player becomes better when he has a manager that sees his potential and trusts him! Trusting him and giving him encouragement and playing him. Regardless of what all of your opinions are, I believe that Nelson Oliveira has the MOST potential out of all the forwards in Benfica!

But potential needs to be seized, valued, and nurtured, and developed. Maybe the fact that he's made some selfish decisions is precisely because he feels undervalued by the manager, and that every time he plays he has to "prove" his worth, by doing something extraordinary in the limited time he's given. Because to be honest, I watched all of the U20 World Cup games, and Nelson Oliveira was not a selfish player there! He worked very hard for the team, moved all over the forward line, and always made passes to teammates, as well as scored crucial goals. Honestly the way that he will grow is by having a manager that puts faith in him, and plays him, ALLOWING him to make mistakes AND grow AND still show the brilliance that we all know he possesses. Some of you are quite hypocritical or just impatient or just not understanding. People grow by doing good, making mistakes, learning, getting back up and then becoming better. Its a continuous cycle of life that is natural. But that is how you get better, by playing, by doing, by learning.

Sit and really consider has this been a year of good "development" for Nelson Oliveira since the last summer in U20 World Cup? Yes he has gained some minutes and been "in" the team for some big games and seen some decent action; but this is not good enough. This is not any old young player we have here. This is an U20 World Cup Finalist and Silver Ball Winner. Also what makes it even more important is that he is a striker! An area that we all know Portugal is desperately struggling in. Seeing all of this, Nelson Oliveira should be made more of a priority in Benfica. He deserves to be more highly regarded and valued. I'm not saying that we need to give him everything on a platter, as in him being the 1st choice striker all the time. I know fully well Oscar Cardozo's goal record is immense and speaks for itself and he's a big player for Benfica. BUT in my opinion Nelson Oliveira ought to be at least 2nd choice striker all of the time! Saviola is nothing special. He's old and past his prime, and he's an Argentinian. Anything he can do Nelson can do. And Nelson is Portuguese. Helder Postiga is 1st choice in the national team but we are counting on Nelson to be a good 2nd choice, so we need him to be sharp and at his best. That comes from him playing regularly. Now Rodrigo is good also, but I do not think that he is better than Nelson Oliveira. I do think that he is very good as well, but Nelson is just as good as he is. The only difference, is that Rodrigo has been given more game time and therefore has more experience and is more comfortable. Nelson ought to be 2nd choice and Rodrigo ought to be 3rd choice.

I know Benfica needed to win this game etc, and thats normal. But like I originally noted, Benfica were winning 1-0 at half time with both Rodrigo and Nelson Oliveira playing. Jorge Jesus should have just left it as it is and I'm sure Nelson would have added a goal or helped create one. Yes you want to win. But you also need to have faith. One needs to have trust. Benfica too often wants only the immediate finished article and almost guaranteed victory now. With that mindset, Benfica will NEVER again produce any great Portuguese players. I know it seems harsh, but that is the reality. One only has to look at the track record of Benfica these past years to realize that. They had Silvio come up through their youth team, who I believe is Portugal's best right back and soon to take over Joao Perreira's place once he recovers form injury. But they didn't value him. He is better than Maxi Perreira. If you had kept him, Silvio could have been your great right back at least for 2 seasons with Coentrao before they moved on to bigger and better things. But it was never to be because of the impatient overly intolerant attitude at the club. Wasn't it true that Benfica also had Deco in their ranks as well as a young player! Before he went to Porto. How could they not have seen and valued the great talent of a player such as Deco? Its all the same story.

Give Nelson more value. Cardozo 1st choice, Nelson Oliveira 2nd choice. Sometimes in life you have to have faith! You have to take gambles. Not everything is secure. Sporting debuting and playing Cristiano Ronaldo at 17 yrs 8 months was a gamble and it paid off, he played some good football for them, then Sir Alex signing and playing Ronaldo as an 18 yr old was a huge risk but he put faith in Ronaldo. Even when Cristiano made many mistakes, Fergie trusted him and played him, and his undoubted talent shone and he did some remarkable things as well!

Nelson Oliveira is 20 yrs old. He is not Cristiano Ronaldo, because there is only one Cristiano. Nelson Oliveira is Nelson Oliveira and there is ONLY ONE Nelson Oliveira! He is a good player, he has the attributes he IS old enough to play 20 is a good age at which he should be able to play fairly regularly. Something must change. I know most of you all Benfica fans don't care about any player or any nationality, you only care about winning. As long as your team wins you are happy happy as can be. That is fine. This summer, Benfica's management need to figure out what their position and plan is for Nelson Oliveira, because in my opinion, this was a year almost wasted for him. Next season CANNOT be allowed to go on as this one did for him. Either they sell Saviola, and make Nelson 2nd choice striker, or they find a decent team to loan him out where he will play more games.
Nelson Oliveira out of national team
14 Sunday, 15 April 2012 20:42
Cmon guys, last thing I want is coming back here in June and say I told you so!!! Let him make all the srew ups he needs in Benfica to grow but not at the cost of our National team, our players work to damn hard without him may I add, for the new kid on the block come and screw it up. He is young imature and selfish not what we need in our national team, grow up and come back in 2-4 years then we will evaluate if you deserve it! because right now u deserve to see it at home on TV or pay your own way to buy the tickets. I know Benfica is dying for a Ronaldo of their own but this is not IT! quacks like a duck, walks like a duck must be an EGOIST duck! Come back when at list you have a respectful ratio of assists to goals. ntil then stay away from our Euro chances our competitors are tough enough dont need an insider screw up!!!!
Nelson Oliveira
13 Sunday, 15 April 2012 20:37
I agree that Nelson Oliveira really does need to improve his decision making if he wants to develop into an elite striker. He has tons of talent, but his decision making remains poor. Rodrigo on the other hand may not have the potential of Nelson, but he is a lot more mature with his decision making.

With regards to the Euro 2012, Nelson Oliveira should definitely be called up. In terms of talent, he's much better than Postiga and especially Almeida, but he definitely shouldn't start. He's a very different striker than Postiga and Almeida, and his speed could come in handy late in the game, but until he improves his decision making, Helder Postiga should start this summer.

He may not have the pace or athleticism of Oliveira, but he fits so well into Paulo Bento's high pressure, quick passing game. He definitely does not have the ability to win games on his own, but his maturity and playing style will suit Ronaldo and Nani best.

In the future Nelson Oliveira could definitely be the world class striker we've needed for so many years, but for now, let's just stick with the quiet, yet consistent Postiga.
12 Sunday, 15 April 2012 20:05
I'm all for Nelson to get his opportunities, but last time I checked we won. Saviola, a sub, scored.
Its seems like I'm crazy, but winning is the most important thing.

I have to laugh sometimes, Benficas toughest critics is their very own fans. Take note Tripeiros, Maca. Podres and Aldeias, there's nothing you can say that's harsher than what Benfiquistas say themselves.

Happy for the coffee cup and hopefully we can get some help for the league title.
who will be the champions
11 Sunday, 15 April 2012 17:39
4 games to go 4 wins to be forca porto
@ Antonio
10 Sunday, 15 April 2012 16:48
Hey of course he cost us the game against brasil, even though he scored a goal and assisted a goal as well... Also all the goals he scored in that tournament also cost us the whole tournmanet.. PFFT! If anything it was because him that Portugal got far. He's young and with a young age, comes immaturity. He will do just fine, everyone needs to stop putting pressure on the kid. Look at Ronaldo when he was young, look at him now.
Nelson Oliveira out of national team please
9 Sunday, 15 April 2012 16:09
many names come to mind when it comes to him but EGOISTA, probably describe it better, not a team player and stubborn its all about him getting fame and hope for a big contract out of benfica, but in order to get a big contract you need to be a team player and he is not. He cost the game for Benfica against chelsea and more important to me he cost the game for Portugal agaisnt Brasil in the final, I do not want him to cost us another game in Poland. Yes he has potential but he is not there yet, this coming from a sportinguista, he can ruin it all he wants for benfica BUT PLEASE DO NOT LET HIM SCREW IT UP FOR PORTUGAL. As a Portuguese I hope he proves me wrong, but you cant have an eggo or feed one if you have not accomplished anything and what stands up are your selfish plays!!
Nelson looked terrible
8 Sunday, 15 April 2012 14:01
Nobody wants to see the kid step up and kill it more than me. However, that being said, he seems to be mentally slow and he definitely has problems processing and making decisions. I know it is cruel to nit-pick and be so critical of a young player, but Nelson has made some terrible decisions in some big spots for Benfica. The decision to shoot from 15 yards out in the closing minutes of the second Chelsea game, instead of cutting sideways to feed a wide open Djallo was one recent, glaring example. Plus, he flops and whines a little too much.
I think he was trying too hard and not doing what he does best, which is make that last pass to create the scoring chance. Not all his fault though, Benfica has been dealing with a creative void all season in front of the box. Nobody, with the exception of Nolito has made the last pass, and even Nolito "goes for glory" a little too much. I know that sound decision making comes with regular playing time and maturity, but damn Nelson, cmon.
BTW, i thought both Witsel and Matic played great yesterday. Witsel will find himself playing in the Premier league by next January, mark my words. I hate to say it, but he oozes talent and class on the pitch. A team like Arsenal or Chelsea, (even Tottenham if Modric is sold) could really blossom with him in the midfield. Cant say enough positive things about him.
Good to get the win
7 Sunday, 15 April 2012 13:05
The Bwin cup is not a big trophy, but it's a title nonetheless. Great to see Saviola get something to show for his difficult season, and if that's the last big contribution he makes to SLB before leaving in the summer, then what a great way to sign off! Good to see Rodrigo scoring too as it can only help him regain his confidence and form which was heavily affected by that injury in Russia.

Gil Vicente played well and I was happy for them and their fans, that they gave us such a close match. The Liga in general has improved in leaps and bounds lately and the likes of Gil Vicente can really take on the big 4 these days, and this final proved this fact even further!

As for SLB, I hope this win will bring back some of the confidence and self-belief in the players, that went missing over the last couple of months...to make sure we do what we have to do now, and win all four of our remaining Liga matches. If we can do that, then the pressure is totally on Porto to finish off the job.

I have not given up on the title yet in the slightest...only losers would give up on a title with still 4 matches left to play, and only 4 points in the equation! Porto can only throw away the title now, that is obvious, but we still have a slight chance of pipping them to first place. Where there's a will, there's a way!!

I expect Porto to beat Beira Mar next week for sure, but after that, their remaining 3 matches could all be tricky and none are guaranteed 3 points: Maritimo away and then Sporting, who are both vying for 4th place, and then ending with Rio Ave away...so who knows? Until it's mathematically impossible, I will NEVER give up hope that we can still cap off a fine season by ending up as champions...Forca Sempre!!!
i agree
6 Sunday, 15 April 2012 01:32
he wasnt happy AT ALL and he had all the right, first he barely plays, second it was against his hometown and he really wanted to play, not only that, he was playing well, but no he takes nelson off, and then puts in saviola and cardozo really?

honestly if i was him i would leave if jj is still there, and when i was asked why i left it would be simple: i love benfica with all my heart, but i needed playing time to evolve as a player.
Why Take Off Nelson Oliveira??
5 Saturday, 14 April 2012 22:28
Congrats on the win, but Benfica were already winning 1-0 at half time, why take off Nelson Oliveira??? He should have been given this whole game. I'm sure he could have scored or assisted another goal. Smh. Portugal's own golden boy, Nelson Oliveira can't even get enough love that he deserves in his own home. Thats the disappointing thing about this game for me. I saw the look on his face when he went to the bench and he's not happy. Things will have to change soon or maybe he'll leave.
who would have thunk it?
4 Saturday, 14 April 2012 17:14
I agree Andre. Its almost like the rug has been pulled out from under us.
Coffee Cup or not it's a must win.
2nd is still a very important finish for guaranteed money.

I like the way Gil Vicente has played this season and would be rooting for them if they weren't playing Benfica.
Futebol is Cruel
3 Saturday, 14 April 2012 14:16
If Benfica wins today: o whatever jesus ur still not off the hook, its just a stupid league cup trophy. i want better trophies.

if BEnfica loses: omg jesus cant even win the league cup, he sucks, fire his butt, his no good, omg we lost to gil vicente

lame huh?
This is ridiculous
2 Saturday, 14 April 2012 13:13
I'm no Benfica fan, but calling for Jesus's head is ridiculous. He's fielded competitive teams formost of 4 seasons and has a track record previous to that.Success is over the long haul, not week to week or even from one season to the next.
Strange how quickly things can change..
1 Saturday, 14 April 2012 11:39
Who would've thought 3 or 4 months ago that the League cup could turn out to be all that Benfica win in a season that promised so much and started so well? That's football for you, nothing can ever be taken for granted. I hope Benfica take this match seriously, because silverware is silverware...and a club of SLB's magnitude cannot finish a season empty-handed, particularly after starting so well.

Gil Vicente have been real impressive at times this season so cannot be under-estimated. I'm sure they will give us a good game. If we do end up winning tonight, it might bring some confidence back to us, to make sure we win the last 4 Liga matches...and if we do that we still have a slight chance of finishing first....vamos a ver!!

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