It was natural and with an air of authority that Benfica confirmed their qualification for the Portuguese Cup final. After the comfortable advantage in the first leg (1-3), the “Reds” defeated Estoril (2-0) and repeated their presence at Jamor last season, this time to measure their strength against Sp. Braga.
The result is far from translating Benfica’s rise to league II leader. With some changes in the starting XI, he managed to get Estoril on the ropes in the first 15 minutes and send his rival to the first 20 meters of the field. Thanks to the permanent changes in position (inside and outside) of Chiquinho and Pedrinho on the right and Nuno Tavares and Cervi on the left, the “Incarnates” have worn down the opponent who has only managed to free himself and put himself in Practice the time of the organized attack.
With a lot of indoor play (and this time several good decisions in the creation zone), Benfica gathered approaches for the opposite goal. And after Gonçalo Ramos (tried to deceive in the submission zone) and Otamendi (shot in the side) were just in front of the goal, it came 1-0 over the break. Hugo Gomes missed the ball and Gonçalo was clear of opponents in the heart of the field to open the scoring (42 ‘).
Estoril paid the price for a positive game idea with a model backed up regardless of the rival’s name and size. When he recaptured the ball without Crespo in the “Eleven” (he stepped into the second part in an effort management strategy that reflected on the game with Feirense), he showed less capacity than usual to drive with quality and the first line of pressure to break through the “incarnated”.
It was precisely this pressure that was the visitors’ Achilles heel in the second half. They were forced to make mistakes in the first phase of construction and saw the “eagles” constantly visiting the area around the area. Chiquinho was more likely to show up on individual raids, looking for the ideal time to complete or assist
The Portuguese midfielder was close to goal in the 60th minute after an indirect free kick and a pass from Pizzi. The same thing happened shortly afterwards with Cervi and Pizzi themselves, before Waldschmidt (shot from the outside) and Everton (shot from the inside) follow the same script after the first wave of substitutions by Jorge Jesus.
The changes made it possible to maintain the printing capacity, but removed the team from all criteria in the indoor game. There was more breadth and superiority was maintained in other ways. And it would be a transition, after so many opportunities that were created in an offensive organization that the 2-0 would see the light of day: Taarabt led, freed Waldschmidt on the right side and the German ended with a cross shot, which with which was made less strong foot.
There was still time for another late cross from Nuno Tavares (and there were so many trying), a sign that the team was producing more for longer. But the real (and final) test of the competition will take place on May 23rd in Jamor in an unprecedented final.