Malaga to Benfica
Benfica have dove further into the transfer market with the signing of Malaga’s Eliseu. The left-back has been linked with the Portuguese club ever since 2012, when Benfica were reportedly very close to agreeing a deal. Now, Eliseu will be reunited with Jorge Jesus, who coached him at Belenenses in 2007, and looks likely to fight for the starting left-back spot with fellow new signing Loris Benito. The left-back has signed a two-season deal with an option of a third season depending on performances.
Eliseu has been at the heart of a very topsy-turvy Malaga side in recent years. A regular before the club was bought out by oil-rich Middle-eastern tycoons, Eliseu nevertheless retained his starting position when the club began to strengthen around him. In fact, he established himself as one of Malaga’s finest assets, most notably in the club’s run to the semi-finals of the Champions League two seasons ago. Despite this, he has never truly won over Portugal National Team boss Paulo Bento, who has omitted Eliseu from the majority of squads despite his excellent performances at the highest level. Not known for his openness to change, it comes as little surprise that Bento is so averse to calling up Eliseu, but with the left-back at 30 years old and his best years behind him, the question goes begging: What if?
Having said all of that, Eliseu’s career is not over. Not by a long shot. Though he had a sub-par season last time out, Eliseu still has talent that while it may not be brought to the national team, can surely be utilized at Benfica. Jorge Jesus has a knack of getting the best out of players, so maybe we’ll all be surprised.