Liga Orangina Youngsters to Watch – Anibal Capela


Anibal Capela

Sporting Covilha

Player to Watch

Anibal Capela is one of the better known names in the world of young Portuguese players. Anibal’s primary position is in the center of defense, although he is adept at playing on either side of the defense. Like Dani Coelho, he has been loaned this season by Braga to Sporting Covilha.

Anibal shot to prominence in late 2010 when, at the age of 19, when he started a match for Braga against Beira-Mar. By that point, the defender had already appeared for the Portugal Under-20 team, and looked to be an asset for Braga for years to come. A little over a month after his debut for Braga, Anibal started, and played 90 minutes, in the team’s Champion’s League group stage match against Shakhtar Donetsk. Although the team lost, Anibal put in an admirable personal performance.

This season, at Sporting Covilha, Anibal has continued his form, and thus grown his reputation. Already having appeared in 11 league matches this season, it came as no surprise when Anibal was earned a cal-up from Portuguese Under-21 coach Rui Jorge. Anibal is already firmly established in the youth national teams in Portugal. He was a part of the U-20 squad at last summer’s Toulon Tournament, and would have been an integral part of the team at the following U-20 World Cup, if he had not been injured.

Anibal Capela is a certainty for the Braga first team in seasons to come. Already established as a star for the future, along with the likes of Nuno Reis and Roderick Miranda, Anibal’s future looks bright.

Liga Orangina Youngsters to Watch: Dani


Dani Coelho

Sporting Covilha

Player to Watch

Talented Portuguese right-backs are becoming more common than in recent years. Dani Coelho can easily be named as one of the most talented young right-backs playing in Portugal. Currently owned by Braga, he has spent two spells in the Portuguese Second Division B, which is the third tier in Portugal. He is playing his trade this season at Liga Orangina side Sporting Covlila, and has had a decent debut season in the league.

Dani first rose to prominence, more or less, when, at the age of 19, he was named on the bench for two of Braga’s games. He did not appear in either of those games, and has not yet made an appearance for Braga in the league. He has, however, been making appearances for lower division clubs. Only aged 22, Dani has already made 38 appearances in the Portuguese Second Division B, and ten in the Liga Orangina. Those are some impressive tallies for a player of his age.

Courtesy of his impressive performances for Estrela Amadora and Vizela, both in the Portuguese Second Division B, Dani earned a call-up to the Portuguese Under-21 team in early 2011 for a match against Sweden. He made his debut in that match, starting and playing until halftime. That was not to be his last appearance for the team, however. He has gone on to play for the team a further three times, and has been generally impressive.

Judging on his performances for Sporting Covilha and the Portugal Under-21 team, Dani is certainly a possibility for Braga’s first team next season. The defender is certainly a star for the future.