Granada Pick up Benfica Duo


Granada, who are brand new to La Liga this season, have acquired the services of Carlos Martins and Jorge Ribeiro, both of Benfica. Benfica have a plethora of center midfielders, with Matic, Nuno Coelho, and Axel Witsel having been brought in during the close-season. Martins, much like Andre Castro has done at Porto, has decided to move elsewhere in search for minutes.

 

That elsewhere is Granada, where he will play on loan for the entirety of the 2011-2012 season. Benfica agreed to pay Martins wages in full, so this is looking more and more like a win-win for Granada. The Spanish outfit have just picked up a Portuguese international, who is capable of the magnificent, that is, if he is not injured or in a bad run of form. Overall, this move will benefit both Carlos Martins and Granada, if he stays fit.

Next on the Benfica outcast list is Jorge Ribeiro. Jorge spent last season on loan at Vitoria Guimaraes, where he played relatively well, scoring twice. The left back slowly fell out of favor at Benfica, and has been almost non-existent for the past few seasons. His talent is undoubted, having earned a handful of caps for the Portuguese National Team. The only obstacle to overcome for him is staying fit. Over the next two seasons, expect to see a revitalized Jorge Ribeiro.

Overall, Granada have been very frugal in the transfer market, acquiring Jorge Ribeiro on a free and Carlos Martins on a no-wage-contribution loan. Granada have a huge test ahead of them if they are to remain in La Liga until next season, but this test will be made easier with both Martins and Ribeiro.

Sporting Duo Linked with Italy


Nuno Andre Coelho and Pedro Mendes have been at the heart of some transfer speculation regarding a possible move to Italy. Coelho made the switch from Porto to Sporting in the summer as part of the deal that saw Moutinho go the other way. The defender has done well since the move, well enough to earn a call-up to the Portuguese National Team. Napoli, Samdoria, and Palermo are all courting him, with West Brom, in England, also said to be interested. Formal contact has been made, according to the player’s agent.

Pedro Mendes, who made the move from Rangers to Sporting last season, has also been in the middle of speculation regarding his future at the club. Bologna and Naples are the teams said to be interested in the defensive midfielder, who starred at the World Cup for Portugal last summer. According to reports, Mendes could leave for around 2 million euros.

Portuguese Duo Moves to Iraklis


Andre Marques and Daniel Fernandes have moved from Sporting and Bochum, respectively, to Greek outfit Iraklis Thessaloniki. Andre Marques, a left-back, was finally finding his stride under former coach Paulo Bento, but when Carvalhal took over the reigns, it became evident that Marques was not in his plans. In Germany, Daniel Fernandes has slowly been falling out of favor, and has barely played at all this season. The move probably has more meaning for Fernandes than it does for Marques, because Fernandes is trying to salvage any chance of playing for Portugal at the World Cup.