Jorge Jesus said that after the covid-19 outbreak that hit the “red” squad, Benfica is already getting into the right rhythm and from what we saw this Saturday it is possible that the next few weeks will be right for him will give.
Benfica scored a triumph (2-0) against Boavista in the 23rd round of the I Liga. With this result, the Reds are equal to 48 points from FC Porto (who will play against Paços this Sunday), one point from Sp. Braga (who will play against Famalicão on Monday) and ten points from Sporting, who will play Saturday against Tondela. Boavista is still in 15th place but may finish the return trip to the division’s relegation zone.
In Luz, a game that could be prepared in a week, Benfica’s performance was convincing and the triumph was never at stake. And this would be Benfica, idealized by Jorge Jesus – which appeared in Luz and which had already appeared against Belenense’s SAD for 20 minutes, but had not appeared consistently and continuously in seven months of work.
It is true that Benfica have played in numerical superiority against Boavista since the 4 ‘, but not always the 11 against 10 is necessarily an advantage – defensively the reduced team remains intact in the end and only loses their presence in attack.
But Benfica, who haven’t conceded a goal in four games, knew how to take advantage. He was dynamic, fast and technical, led the opponent’s block and made enough moves to score against Boavista.
Chidozie left early
This game was inevitably marked by the exclusion of Chidozie after 4 ‘. Waldschmidt rode on the edge of the area and was carried in isolation from the headquarters. There was no penalty and a yellow card, as Manuel Mota emphasized at the beginning, but a direct free and red card after the action by VAR.
Boavista with less than one player and the 5x3x2 compiled by Jesualdo Ferreira surprisingly became a 4x4x1. The coach chose to change the system instead of having a player restore the line of defense to five, and Boavista may have felt the effects of that change of plan.
The Portuenses were prepared for the five point block and were constantly running late at the ball carrier, and the line of defense was not aligned with the center line. If we add the enormous dynamism of Benfica, we have an offensive football cocktail par excellence.
In what may be the best first part of the season, Benfica added moves with short combinations, triangulations played by the two runners, solutions between lines, crosses and even depth movements.
Benfica did a bit of everything with tremendous variability and added several finishing moves. Veríssimo (15 ‘), Waldschmidt (21’), Rafa (27 ‘and 47’), Otamendi (37 ‘) and Taarabt (40’) had their movements in different ways, but Seferovic was the man in focus.
He initially made five shots, three of them in excellent positions, but returned to show what he has shown since arriving at Benfica: excellent moves but inability to finish. The highlight was the game, which Diogo Gonçalves crossed with 38 minutes, and the Swiss headed weakly in goal.
But it was redeemed shortly afterwards. In the 43rd minute, the Portuguese full-back trusted Seferovic, this time on site. When he came “grabbed” from behind, he created right and crossed the Swiss, who “only” touched near the goal line – bad mark from Reggie Cannon.
Six minutes after the break, the “company” was repeated. With space on the right, Diogo Gonçalves made another great cross and with the third header in the game, Seferovic did what he hadn’t done in the previous ones.
Benfica lead 2-0 and the game lost some interest. With comfortable advantage and numerical superiority, Benfica reduced the intensity, even with the physical (natural) interruption of a boavista who has been playing with ten since the 4 ‘.
It wasn’t until 75 ‘that there was something to tell again. Everton crossed, Veríssimo headed the post and Seferovic did the hat trick reloading. He did this for a while until VAR analyzed the move and suggested the cancellation, out of play.
Darwin still missed a good chance, as did Chiquinho, but Benfica cared little about the waste. Boavista was more than subdued.