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The European/World Football Thread III watch

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    (Original post by aa22)
    Well both Benfica and Porto won their cup matches in the end. Benfica controlled the match but Penafiel did pretty well defensively to stop our attacks. To be fair, we had a lot of first team players out, so once we made some subs near the end, the chances started flowing and we managed to score.

    Porto also managed to get a late goal... only caught the last 20 minutes or so. And now Benfica and Porto have one more match lined up against each other >_<

    I see Otamendi has been sold. Kinda strange that he is sold AFTER the transfer window closed.. is he gonna play anymore? And Fernando is a mystery as well.. today's newspapers say he's gonna come back to the team, but he hasn't signed a new contract yet? And wants to leave...

    As for the weekend's big match. I won't be able to watch it

    I might have been able to catch it if it was a late kick off, e.g. closer to 9pm. But its at 6pm! So early. I'm gonna be out all day because I have a two hour drive up the country for a family dinner.

    So disappointed...
    I don’t see how the Otamendi situation has worked out but he was able to go to Valencia straight away, obviously unable to play until the summer, so they’ve sent him straight on loan to Atlético Mineiro so he could get playing time to help get a look in for the WC. I guess my plus side to this is that he’s gone to Brazil and to Atlético of all teams so I’ll get to keep an eye on him still.

    I find it completely crazy that the Taça de Portugal and Taça da Liga have exactly the same semi-final fixtures! But another 3 Porto-Benfica ties to add to our list with the TDP being over two legs.

    Oh wow, you got away with not missing the game! It’s like you got someone to cause the debris to fall from the roof deliberately just so it could be postponed. Hopefully you’ll be in on Tuesday to watch it at a more reasonable time of 8:15!

    Such a bizarre thing to see though and as frustrating as it was to see it postponed it was totally understandable because if they continued and the falling debris injured someone during the game then it would have caused an uproar.

    At least it got over my dilemma of having to watch Porto on the TV whilst attempting to keep an eye out for Benfica-Sporting on the laptop. I can solely concentrate on the Derby now with fingers crossed for a draw on Tuesday.

    It’ll be interesting to see if they team line-ups change. I was looking forward to seeing how the Montero and Slimani partnership would do with and if Jardim not filling the space of William Carvalho would have proved costly.

    As for Porto, poor, poor, poor and so poor! That score line is so flattering for us. Paços were very unlucky not to get a point from that and faltered right at the death to make the score line look bad for them. They deserved so much more out of that. Terrible performance and attendance too! Fans seem to be keeping away whilst these poor performances continue.

    I’m currently watching Braga-Gil Vicente – Rafa completely owning that pitch and looking superb. It's a shame the rest of the Braga team aren't doing well this season but i bet if he was in the Sporting team (who have been playing well as a whole) he'd be looking even better with having the correct players around him to help him out more. But the more I see of him the more you can see his potential. I have a feeling Braga will let him go to the first club to offer them decent money in the summer and he won't play as much as he does now and will slowly fall of the radar. I hope not as he looks like he could be something special.
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    (Original post by ra-ra-ra)
    I don’t see how the Otamendi situation has worked out but he was able to go to Valencia straight away, obviously unable to play until the summer, so they’ve sent him straight on loan to Atlético Mineiro so he could get playing time to help get a look in for the WC. I guess my plus side to this is that he’s gone to Brazil and to Atlético of all teams so I’ll get to keep an eye on him still.

    I find it completely crazy that the Taça de Portugal and Taça da Liga have exactly the same semi-final fixtures! But another 3 Porto-Benfica ties to add to our list with the TDP being over two legs.

    Oh wow, you got away with not missing the game! It’s like you got someone to cause the debris to fall from the roof deliberately just so it could be postponed. Hopefully you’ll be in on Tuesday to watch it at a more reasonable time of 8:15!

    Such a bizarre thing to see though and as frustrating as it was to see it postponed it was totally understandable because if they continued and the falling debris injured someone during the game then it would have caused an uproar.

    At least it got over my dilemma of having to watch Porto on the TV whilst attempting to keep an eye out for Benfica-Sporting on the laptop. I can solely concentrate on the Derby now with fingers crossed for a draw on Tuesday.

    It’ll be interesting to see if they team line-ups change. I was looking forward to seeing how the Montero and Slimani partnership would do with and if Jardim not filling the space of William Carvalho would have proved costly.

    As for Porto, poor, poor, poor and so poor! That score line is so flattering for us. Paços were very unlucky not to get a point from that and faltered right at the death to make the score line look bad for them. They deserved so much more out of that. Terrible performance and attendance too! Fans seem to be keeping away whilst these poor performances continue.

    I’m currently watching Braga-Gil Vicente – Rafa completely owning that pitch and looking superb. It's a shame the rest of the Braga team aren't doing well this season but i bet if he was in the Sporting team (who have been playing well as a whole) he'd be looking even better with having the correct players around him to help him out more. But the more I see of him the more you can see his potential. I have a feeling Braga will let him go to the first club to offer them decent money in the summer and he won't play as much as he does now and will slowly fall of the radar. I hope not as he looks like he could be something special.
    Oh I didn't realise Otamendi had actually left. I thought Valencia had just agreed the transfer and that he'd move at the end of the season (because the deal was only announced after the January window closed). I had no idea he is now on loan in Brazil!

    And yeh, really amazing that those fixtures are the same. There was similar symmetry with the final Taça da Liga match and the following League match (for Benfica and Porto) as well.


    ANYWAY. Wow... Before I left this morning, I was actually secretly hoping that the match would somehow miraculously get postponed. I thought "That will never happen because it too damn unlikely". And then I got home (at around 9), went to check the score and instead saw it was called off! What luck!

    I agree, very bizarre reason that the match was called off.. I mean, it had to be done due to health and safety, but something isn't right in the build of the stadium if stuff is just falling off like that because of strong winds (although I hear the weather really is very bad in Portugal right now?).

    Anyway. Personally, I'm really glad I'll be able to watch this match.. hopefully it is played on Tuesday without any problems. However, this isn't good for the team, with an already tight fixture list :/

    Plus, it's not exactly the sort of problems you want to be having in your stadium when you're supposed to be hosting the Champions League final in three months. First it was the poor pitch conditions and now this...


    As for Porto, I didn't expect anything other than the win. Although from what you're saying, they are still not good enough, in which case it is annoying that Porto picked up all three points >_< Having read around some of the news sites, it seems the team was booed off at the end despite the win?

    I haven't really seen much of Braga, or Rafa, but I have seen him play for the Under-21/20/etc national sides and has always seemed decent. I agree that if he is playing well at Braga he might get a big move, but I don't think any team needs a player like him... unless Porto do? But they have Josue.. and Sporting don't need him because they could just get someone from the academy... And definitely not Benfica, it would be career suicide if he agreed to a move there.
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    Atletico are doing well aren't they...

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    (Original post by aa22)
    Oh I didn't realise Otamendi had actually left. I thought Valencia had just agreed the transfer and that he'd move at the end of the season (because the deal was only announced after the January window closed). I had no idea he is now on loan in Brazil!

    And yeh, really amazing that those fixtures are the same. There was similar symmetry with the final Taça da Liga match and the following League match (for Benfica and Porto) as well.


    ANYWAY. Wow... Before I left this morning, I was actually secretly hoping that the match would somehow miraculously get postponed. I thought "That will never happen because it too damn unlikely". And then I got home (at around 9), went to check the score and instead saw it was called off! What luck!

    I agree, very bizarre reason that the match was called off.. I mean, it had to be done due to health and safety, but something isn't right in the build of the stadium if stuff is just falling off like that because of strong winds (although I hear the weather really is very bad in Portugal right now?).

    Anyway. Personally, I'm really glad I'll be able to watch this match.. hopefully it is played on Tuesday without any problems. However, this isn't good for the team, with an already tight fixture list :/

    Plus, it's not exactly the sort of problems you want to be having in your stadium when you're supposed to be hosting the Champions League final in three months. First it was the poor pitch conditions and now this...


    As for Porto, I didn't expect anything other than the win. Although from what you're saying, they are still not good enough, in which case it is annoying that Porto picked up all three points >_< Having read around some of the news sites, it seems the team was booed off at the end despite the win?

    I haven't really seen much of Braga, or Rafa, but I have seen him play for the Under-21/20/etc national sides and has always seemed decent. I agree that if he is playing well at Braga he might get a big move, but I don't think any team needs a player like him... unless Porto do? But they have Josue.. and Sporting don't need him because they could just get someone from the academy... And definitely not Benfica, it would be career suicide if he agreed to a move there.

    I had a bit of surprise too as I was checking out the list of Atlético players called up for the Copa Libertadores and saw “20 – Nicolás Otamendi”, so I had to do a bit of digging and realised he’s gone on loan there until the summer. Odd though.

    So lucky with this getting called off because games so rarely get called off in this league too. But for the stadium to just blow away like that was crazy. It was like snow falling but then you just see these big clumps of cladding and insulation. I’ll admit that when I turned the game on it was zoomed in on this big fury thing flat out on the pitch... I thought it was Vitória (or Glória for that matter) who had popped their clogs.

    Maisfutebol had some good photographs of it though. You can see why I thought it was Vitória... :rolleyes:
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    But yeah, just like the bad weather over here in the South with the floods and high winds, Portugal is experiencing something similar with very high winds too.

    Yeah, they got booed off. It was a very poor performance and although we won the fans (the very few of them that were there) were not happy with the display. Still don’t think booing will was the right thing to do though. Yes we’re playing **** but get behind them, not boo them!

    Just seen that Fernando has finally agreed to sign a new contract. I know he will most definitely be leaving in the summer but at least he won’t be running away for free and we can get some money out of him.
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    (Original post by ra-ra-ra)
    I had a bit of surprise too as I was checking out the list of Atlético players called up for the Copa Libertadores and saw “20 – Nicolás Otamendi”, so I had to do a bit of digging and realised he’s gone on loan there until the summer. Odd though.

    So lucky with this getting called off because games so rarely get called off in this league too. But for the stadium to just blow away like that was crazy. It was like snow falling but then you just see these big clumps of cladding and insulation. I’ll admit that when I turned the game on it was zoomed in on this big fury thing flat out on the pitch... I thought it was Vitória (or Glória for that matter) who had popped their clogs.

    Maisfutebol had some good photographs of it though. You can see why I thought it was Vitória... :rolleyes:
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    But yeah, just like the bad weather over here in the South with the floods and high winds, Portugal is experiencing something similar with very high winds too.

    Yeah, they got booed off. It was a very poor performance and although we won the fans (the very few of them that were there) were not happy with the display. Still don’t think booing will was the right thing to do though. Yes we’re playing **** but get behind them, not boo them!

    Just seen that Fernando has finally agreed to sign a new contract. I know he will most definitely be leaving in the summer but at least he won’t be running away for free and we can get some money out of him.
    LOL, I can see why you thought that about the eagle... And it's interesting that Fernando signed a new contract, I thought he wanted to leave no matter what. I was hoping that he'd kick up a fuss and not play for the rest of the season :P

    So.. yeh, that was awesome, what a win! Complete domination, from start to finish. I really didn't expect such an easy win. I can't even remember any real opportunities for Sporting.

    Enzo was amazing once again, and Fejsa played one of his best matches so far. Garay and Luisao were excellent at the back and Rodrigo could have scored a goal or two if it wasn't for Patricio.

    Sporting missed William Carvalho waaaaaay too much. As good as he is, for a team as big as Sporting to be completely reliant on one young player is not a good sign.

    Four point lead over Porto now. Really didn't expect this a few months ago, we easily look like the best team in the league right now (and to think Salvio isn't too far from returning!).

    My only concern is that we usually implode whenever we have any sort of lead in the league... plus European football will restart this month, so I can't see our lead lasting very long :/
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    (Original post by aa22)
    LOL, I can see why you thought that about the eagle... And it's interesting that Fernando signed a new contract, I thought he wanted to leave no matter what. I was hoping that he'd kick up a fuss and not play for the rest of the season :P

    So.. yeh, that was awesome, what a win! Complete domination, from start to finish. I really didn't expect such an easy win. I can't even remember any real opportunities for Sporting.

    Enzo was amazing once again, and Fejsa played one of his best matches so far. Garay and Luisao were excellent at the back and Rodrigo could have scored a goal or two if it wasn't for Patricio.

    Sporting missed William Carvalho waaaaaay too much. As good as he is, for a team as big as Sporting to be completely reliant on one young player is not a good sign.

    Four point lead over Porto now. Really didn't expect this a few months ago, we easily look like the best team in the league right now (and to think Salvio isn't too far from returning!).

    My only concern is that we usually implode whenever we have any sort of lead in the league... plus European football will restart this month, so I can't see our lead lasting very long :/
    I think Fernando has made it clear that he does want to leave and the only reason he signed a contract is so he doesn't leave for free. Porto must have upped his money considerably to get him to agree to sign on for these next few months even though there is no intention of staying just so we could make some money out of him.

    I feel he's a player who got lost amongst other key players over the years for his importance in this squad. The likes of Lucho, Lisandro Lopez, Raul Meireles, Falcao, Hulk, James and Joao Moutinho got all the plaudits for being significant players but it's now none of them remain you can really see just how vital he has been / is in this squad. I'll admit I'm even guilty of recognising the importance of the other players and looking past Fernando.

    He's always been solid for Porto but it was so easy to say the others were more significant as they stood out more whilst Fernando quietly got on with what he had to do in the holding role. I think losing him will play a bigger impact than it was losing some of the others. I feel the same way towards Helton too. Although his goalkeeping is not up there with being the best, i think the presence of him is so important to this team. He's a character and a huge voice on that pitch, and if you put the heart-attack moments aside (which has been more than a fair share) you can say he's been equally as vital in this squad as someone like Moutinho was.

    Anyway, enough about Fernando and Helton... I've probably made you fall asleep with that.

    Well, i bet Sporting wished the cladding was to come off the stadium for a second time in a week. Not a great performance by Sporting. If that is what they are like without William Carvalho then God help them when he does eventually leave.

    I think Benfica deserve credit for being so good though. It's so easy to say Sporting were not at their best but Benfica started this match brilliantly. Just every time there was a Benfica attack Sporting looked in trouble. This is where you can see how important William Carvalho has been holding that midfield this season. I agree with Enzo Perez being fantastic. Really played his part and got himself a deserved goal. Sporting were second best throughout though and Benfica completely deserved all three points.

    That's the thing, with the cup games and then the Europa League games starting again for Porto and Benfica there will be game after game so this will favour Sporting with only having the league to play for (well, i guess this all depends on the decision about the Taça da Liga... when they eventually decide about it :rolleyes:). I still think there will be a few more changes at the top though, i just don't think it will be us sitting top come the end of the season.

    I've just finished watching Rio Ave-Braga. WOW, Rio Ave in the final of the Taça da Liga. Braga were quite unlucky with the red card and penalty decisions, and so having 10 men for the end of the first half and all of the second half was always an advantage for Rio Ave. A good match between the two and how ironic that it was a player called Braga to score the winner against Braga.
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    Waiting for Benfica's yearly crumble.
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    (Original post by ra-ra-ra)
    ...
    So everything stays the same for one more week, thankfully. We managed to get our win in the end, but from the first half, it was looking like it would be another one of those games where we just look uninspired.

    Didn't get to watch Porto or Sporting though, but from what I can tell it was minimum services all round.

    Also, I didn't realise the European matches restarted this week!

    (Original post by bammy jastard 27)
    Waiting for Benfica's yearly crumble.
    That will happen closer to the end of the season.. let us enjoy this brief moment of hope for now..
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    (Original post by ra-ra-ra)
    ...
    First of all, the Europa League. Our match was poor, but we managed to claw out a dodgy offside goal and win it, despite so many changes to the starting 11. Also was nice to see Salvio play 15 minutes!

    Porto were unlucky to have lost their 2-0 lead. They were comfortable for most of the match, even though Frankfurt had some chances on the counter.. I really didn't expect Porto to conceed two goals though. Gonna be a tough tie over in Germany.



    Moving on. ZOMG, Porto just lost.

    Porto are not playing well at all and this match was more of the same. There is no clear game plan.. all I saw, for most part of the game, was just long balls to Jackson and hope that the fullbacks or Quaresma make something happen. Quaresma was excellent though, I think at this rate he should be the first choice for one of the wings for Portugal (we got Denmark again! :rolleyes: )

    What is happening to Quintero btw? I would have thought that with James, and now Lucho, gone, he'd become the main playmaker.

    I can't see how PdC can keep Paulo Fonseca with the team playing like this...

    Also, once again Estoril have done some damage to the big teams. Great season they're having.

    Sporting nearly dropped some points last night as well but manage to pull through.

    And now we can go 5 points clear at the top with a win tomorrow! Wow. I bet we'll buckle under the pressure...
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    (Original post by aa22)
    First of all, the Europa League. Our match was poor, but we managed to claw out a dodgy offside goal and win it, despite so many changes to the starting 11. Also was nice to see Salvio play 15 minutes!

    Porto were unlucky to have lost their 2-0 lead. They were comfortable for most of the match, even though Frankfurt had some chances on the counter.. I really didn't expect Porto to conceed two goals though. Gonna be a tough tie over in Germany.



    Moving on. ZOMG, Porto just lost.

    Porto are not playing well at all and this match was more of the same. There is no clear game plan.. all I saw, for most part of the game, was just long balls to Jackson and hope that the fullbacks or Quaresma make something happen. Quaresma was excellent though, I think at this rate he should be the first choice for one of the wings.

    What is happening to Quintero btw? I would have thought that after James, and now Lucho, gone, he'd become the main playmaker.

    I can't see how PdC can keep Paulo Fonseca with the team playing like this...

    Also, once again Estoril have done some damage to the big teams. Great season their having.

    Sporting nearly dropped some points last night as well but manage to pull through.

    And now we can go 5 points clear at the top with a win tomorrow! Wow. I bet we'll buckle under the pressure...

    Goodbye home record, goodbye Paulo Fonseca! Disgraceful.. We are absolutely awful. Losing a two goal lead on Thursday was bad enough but this tonight just topped off how terrible we really are. One player looked like they wanted to play tonight and that was Quaresma. He was unlucky not to score a couple of the free kicks we had towards the end but two good saves stopped them from going in. The rest of the squad just looked like they really couldn't be bothered. Can't see Paulo Fonseca being in charge for much longer.

    We'll see how Benfica do tomorrow but this title is completely over for Porto and i think we have a slim chance of winning anything with the way we're going. Sporting just about managed to win yesterday but i really think this is now Benfica's title.

    Like you said though, Estoril have had a cracking season and credit to them. They've managed to do something no other team have done against Porto for more than 5 years which is beating us at home. No complaints about the penalty or the red card either, all deserved. Mangala out for 3 matches now too. As for Quintero, i don't think PF has the faith in him. We should never have sent Iturbe on loan either, i think that was a big mistake. He's been cracking at Verona this season and really someone who would be perfect in this team right now to provide an extra threat as it's only Quaresma who is looking dangerous, in every game he's played too!

    We're going to need a miracle in the Europa League on Thursday but at least Lima got you lot an important away goal. Win tomorrow and there will be even greater spirits at the Luz on Thursday to get behind the team. I don't understand why you're playing tomorrow? Surely with playing on Thursday the FPF should have arranged the game tomorrow game for today instead?

    It's only February and i already want the season to end. This gets all those Porto fans that kept taking a swipe at VP whilst he was here... He may have had dodgy tactics and playing ugly football but at least we never looked as bad as this.

    The one season when in August i felt confident we had a good Porto side despite losing key players we completely **** it up. Teaches me, eh?
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    (Original post by ra-ra-ra)
    Goodbye home record, goodbye Paulo Fonseca! Disgraceful.. We are absolutely awful. Losing a two goal lead on Thursday was bad enough but this tonight just topped off how terrible we really are. One player looked like they wanted to play tonight and that was Quaresma. He was unlucky not to score a couple of the free kicks we had towards the end but two good saves stopped them from going in. The rest of the squad just looked like they really couldn't be bothered. Can't see Paulo Fonseca being in charge for much longer.

    We'll see how Benfica do tomorrow but this title is completely over for Porto and i think we have a slim chance of winning anything with the way we're going. Sporting just about managed to win yesterday but i really think this is now Benfica's title.

    Like you said though, Estoril have had a cracking season and credit to them. They've managed to do something no other team have done against Porto for more than 5 years which is beating us at home. No complaints about the penalty or the red card either, all deserved. Mangala out for 3 matches now too. As for Quintero, i don't think PF has the faith in him. We should never have sent Iturbe on loan either, i think that was a big mistake. He's been cracking at Verona this season and really someone who would be perfect in this team right now to provide an extra threat as it's only Quaresma who is looking dangerous, in every game he's played too!

    We're going to need a miracle in the Europa League on Thursday but at least Lima got you lot an important away goal. Win tomorrow and there will be even greater spirits at the Luz on Thursday to get behind the team. I don't understand why you're playing tomorrow? Surely with playing on Thursday the FPF should have arranged the game tomorrow game for today instead?

    It's only February and i already want the season to end. This gets all those Porto fans that kept taking a swipe at VP whilst he was here... He may have had dodgy tactics and playing ugly football but at least we never looked as bad as this.

    The one season when in August i felt confident we had a good Porto side despite losing key players we completely **** it up. Teaches me, eh?
    I had no idea Porto had such a record. Pretty impressive run.. but to have lost it to Estoril (not even Benfica or Sporting) must be annoying (even though Estoril have been good lately). Vitor Pereira's Porto were definitely much better than this one..

    It seems like Paulo Fonseca has survived for now, but who knows for how long. If Porto go out of the Europa League, it's gonna be tough for Porto to justify keeping him, especially with Marco Silva being a potentially good option.. he could start his work and get used to how things work at Porto this season and then have a real go next season.

    I think Benfica are playing tonight because we lost around a day travelling to and from Greece during midweek, and this week we play at home. It was the opposite for Porto. Porto played at home vs Frankfurt and then at home again against Estoril, so they didn't need as big of a break, but they DO need the extra day to rest/travel to Germany this week.

    Let's see what we do tonight first, I wouldn't say we're definite for the title just yet (although I have to admit we are favourites now).. Guimaraes beat us in the Taca so you can't write them out just yet. Plus, no Garay tonight >_<



    EDIT: Ok, so we won. Largely thanks to a ridiculous first half performance by Markovic (what a goal he scored btw). We could have scored one more I think, but our finishing was poor tonight. So 5 points clear now... I still don't think we've won anything yet. We just need to drop points once or twice and suddenly it's all open again. And considering that Sporting have just the league to play for, I won't get ahead of myself just yet.. it ended badly last season, so I think I've learnt my lesson..
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    (Original post by aa22)
    I had no idea Porto had such a record. Pretty impressive run.. but to have lost it to Estoril (not even Benfica or Sporting) must be annoying (even though Estoril have been good lately). Vitor Pereira's Porto were definitely much better than this one..

    It seems like Paulo Fonseca has survived for now, but who knows for how long. If Porto go out of the Europa League, it's gonna be tough for Porto to justify keeping him, especially with Marco Silva being a potentially good option.. he could start his work and get used to how things work at Porto this season and then have a real go next season.

    I think Benfica are playing tonight because we lost around a day travelling to and from Greece during midweek, and this week we play at home. It was the opposite for Porto. Porto played at home vs Frankfurt and then at home again against Estoril, so they didn't need as big of a break, but they DO need the extra day to rest/travel to Germany this week.

    Let's see what we do tonight first, I wouldn't say we're definite for the title just yet (although I have to admit we are favourites now).. Guimaraes beat us in the Taca so you can't write them out just yet. Plus, no Garay tonight >_<



    EDIT: Ok, so we won. Largely thanks to a ridiculous first half performance by Markovic (what a goal he scored btw). We could have scored one more I think, but our finishing was poor tonight. So 5 points clear now... I still don't think we've won anything yet. We just need to drop points once or twice and suddenly it's all open again. And considering that Sporting have just the league to play for, I won't get ahead of myself just yet.. it ended badly last season, so I think I've learnt my lesson..
    I thought we would have lost it under VP so to keep it going a little while longer in the league has been a bonus. We had to lose it one day and in a way for it to be by Estoril shows we can be beaten by the smaller teams in this league at home, which can be an incentive for other smaller clubs who visit the Dragão.

    So yeah, Paulo Fonseca survives for now. I think if we don't make it through tomorrow he'll be gone. Marco Silva has done an exceptional job at Estoril especially when you look at Estoril today and see Marco Silva has no managerial experience at all. So it would be a risk, especially if it turns out like this again. To be honest with you, even a manager with a lot of experience can do just as bad i guess. Anyway, when he leaves whoever his replacement is will have to do something to this team. Can you imagine how mad the Porto fans will be if we have a season like this again? They’re already causing havoc about PF.

    Seven points ahead of Porto, five points ahead of Sporting. This really is Benficas to lose now. Markovic was ridiculously great in the first half and a great goal he scored too. Benfica have put together a good little run but similar to what you said, let’s see if they can keep it up. I certainly think we’re out of the race but with Sporting just playing for the league there's still a lot that can happen.
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    Real Madrid are looking lethal at the moment.

    Bayern vs Real

    :coma:
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    Real's front three looked deadly but they were playing a poor Schalke. I agree that would a cracker of a game :ahee: but I think Bayern would beat them.
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    (Original post by aa22)
    x.
    How's gaitan doing these days. Just strolling around and I'm surprised he's still at Benfica.
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    (Original post by ra-ra-ra)
    I thought we would have lost it under VP so to keep it going a little while longer in the league has been a bonus. We had to lose it one day and in a way for it to be by Estoril shows we can be beaten by the smaller teams in this league at home, which can be an incentive for other smaller clubs who visit the Dragão.

    So yeah, Paulo Fonseca survives for now. I think if we don't make it through tomorrow he'll be gone. Marco Silva has done an exceptional job at Estoril especially when you look at Estoril today and see Marco Silva has no managerial experience at all. So it would be a risk, especially if it turns out like this again. To be honest with you, even a manager with a lot of experience can do just as bad i guess. Anyway, when he leaves whoever his replacement is will have to do something to this team. Can you imagine how mad the Porto fans will be if we have a season like this again? They’re already causing havoc about PF.

    Seven points ahead of Porto, five points ahead of Sporting. This really is Benficas to lose now. Markovic was ridiculously great in the first half and a great goal he scored too. Benfica have put together a good little run but similar to what you said, let’s see if they can keep it up. I certainly think we’re out of the race but with Sporting just playing for the league there's still a lot that can happen.
    Wow.. what a match that was in Germany. I was hooked. I thought for sure that Porto had no way back into the tie after having gone down by 2 goals, but Mangala managed to get two headers in and suddenly Porto were dominating and playing good football and there was hope again. When Frankfurt took the lead again, I thought that had to be it, but Ghilas managed to get a goal right at the end which was great.

    Porto conceeded three very bad goals though.. really need to sort out that defence..

    As for Benfica. Again, many changes... nice to see Cardozo and Salvio starting again though. We didn't really do much for the majority of the match, the sending off of Katsouranis opened it up a bit, and once we had Lima/Rodrigo/Markovic on the pitch we managed to score three. The scoreline flatters us, but we deserved the win in the end.

    Porto will play Napoli next, I can't see Porto winning against them. And Benfica are coming to London!! ZOMG. I really hope I can get some tickets...



    (Original post by 419)
    How's gaitan doing these days. Just strolling around and I'm surprised he's still at Benfica.
    He's been doing very well... he has improved every season that he's been here and is a really important player in the team now. He's probably close to his peak right now.

    Obviously I'd be sad if he left, but I think he definitely deserves a big move, he has worked hard for it...

    He scored this nice freekick against PAOK:

    http://gfycat.com/ObedientOrneryDanishswedishfarmdog
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    Some cracking ties in the next round of the Europa league.

    FC Porto vs Napoli
    Juventus vs Fiorentina
    Sevilla vs Real Betis
    Tottenham vs Benfica

    Two extra Seville derby matches to watch this season


    (Original post by aa22)
    Wow.. what a match that was in Germany. I was hooked. I thought for sure that Porto had no way back into the tie after having gone down by 2 goals, but Mangala managed to get two headers in and suddenly Porto were dominating and playing good football and there was hope again. When Frankfurt took the lead again, I thought that had to be it, but Ghilas managed to get a goal right at the end which was great.

    Porto conceeded three very bad goals though.. really need to sort out that defence..

    As for Benfica. Again, many changes... nice to see Cardozo and Salvio starting again though. We didn't really do much for the majority of the match, the sending off of Katsouranis opened it up a bit, and once we had Lima/Rodrigo/Markovic on the pitch we managed to score three. The scoreline flatters us, but we deserved the win in the end.

    Porto will play Napoli next, I can't see Porto winning against them. And Benfica are coming to London!! ZOMG. I really hope I can get some tickets...
    Paulo Fonseca lives to fight another week, only just. What a crazy but absolutely cracking two legs. Awful defending throughout both legs but good job we could score. I really thought after they went 2-0 up we would never come back, and then when they took the lead again I thought all that work by getting back into the game for nothing, Porto really surprised me by getting the third. So happy for Ghilas! I’m annoyed he hasn’t been given more of a chance, five minutes here and there at the end of games is not enough so for him to come on for just over half an hour and to grab the important goal is great for him. Cracking game though, cracking noise from both fans.

    Katsouranis made that easier for Benfica because as soon as he got sent off it really opened up for you lot. Hopefully you’ll manage to find some tickets from somewhere, but sadly there will be no trip to South Wales for me. Napoli will be so difficult for us. Mertens, Hamsik, Callejón and Higuaín will completely rip our current defence to pieces! You can even include Inler and Insigne into the mix too. Not good for Porto. I love watching Napoli but I really don’t think I’ll be enjoying them over these two legs because with the way we’re playing I can only see it going one way. As for Spurs-Benfica, that should be another cracking tie too, would have preferred it if AVB was still there though.

    Huge win for Sporting tonight, deserved win too in my eyes. Sporting with a William Carvalho in their side is so much greater than when he’s not around. Another solid performance, I really wonder how much of a difference he would have made in the Benfica-Sporting match where he was massively missed. They're going to struggle to replace him once he leaves. It was good to see a bit more of Rafa Silva too and nice to see he’s been called up for the friendly match next week.
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    Did anybody see the volleyball shot in the Roma v Inter game? It's one of the most hilarious blatant handballs I have ever seen!
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    (Original post by Icecream1)
    Did anybody see the volleyball shot in the Roma v Inter game? It's one of the most hilarious blatant handballs I have ever seen!
    From Icardi, yeah. I don't think he even got booked!
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    (Original post by gmj1892)
    From Icardi, yeah. I don't think he even got booked!
    The sound of his palm on the ball was clearly audible! The De Rossi punch him was really bad.
 
 
 
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