Opinion: Bernardo Silva – Benfica Loses a Gem


Photo: AS Monaco

Photo: AS Monaco

Bernardo Silva

Benfica to Monaco

It was announced this week that Benfica had officially sold 20 year-old Bernardo Silva to Ligue 1 side Monaco for just under 16 million euros. Silva has spent the first half of the season on loan at Monaco, and has impressed in both the league and the Champions League. Some may have predicted this move from the start, as Monaco had the option to purchase the midfielder as a part of the loan agreement, but there were signs that Benfica president Luis Filipe Vieira intended to bring Silva back for next season. Now, with the dust settled, all we can do is look back at what it could have been for Benfica. This is not to say that Silva’s career is over, by any stretch of the imagination. The midfielder is touted to have a bright future, and could very well be one of the most important Portuguese players of his generation, but this move has deep implications for the Portuguese game, and represents a trend currently occurring in Portugal. Continue reading

Portuguese Liga Week in Review: Round 1


Photo: Sergio Miguel Santos

Photo: Sergio Miguel Santos

The Primeira Liga began last weekend, and with the transfer window still open, there is still plenty of news to report. Orlando Mac takes a look at the major headlines over the past week.

Luis Felipe’s Interview


 

Luis Felipe Vieira’s interview this week on BTV had many people talking, with Financial Crisis, Player Transfers, and Portuguese Players making up some of the talking points. Some Eagle fans were quite critical of the interview claiming they didn’t get honest answers from LFV, but the fact is that any CEO of any business will not outright tell you they failed, or that there is trouble at hand. That would lose them public confidence and in turn create a bigger crisis. So like any CEO Luis Felipe did some dancing around questions until he could get in the words he wanted. I thought overall he did a good job in breaking down the key areas of concern, and if you read between the lines a bit, as you have to do in these situations, everything is still headed in the right direction, for now.

Sporting Hold-out Trouble


 

You couldn’t escape the news on Sporting CP’s troubles with Rojo and Slimani both faced discipline from Sporting for trying to force a move away from the Avalade. I applaud Bruno de Carvalho for his efforts to not be held ransom over the two World Cup stars, but was disturbed by the constant press releases on their own site. It looked unprofessional at times with the he says, she says reports. Unfortunately this is still part of cleaning up Godinho’s mess at the club, but it really proved how 3rd party contracts can have a harsh effect on a club, at the most inopportune moments. Sporting was also reported to be filing a tampering complaint with FIFA against Manchester United over the Rojo fiasco.

Luisao Tampering


 

On the topic of tampering it was also reported this week that Benfica could file a complaint with FIFA over Juventus’ attempt to lure Luisao, the Eagles captain, to Italy. Juventus is reported to have suggested to Luisao to have his contract terminated so he could join them on a free transfer. This really angered not only LFV but also the loyal fans of the club who took to twitter en masse to show their displeasure. Luisao is a long serving Benfica player with over 10 years of service, first signing with the club in 2003. Of anyone that could request a transfer he would be the one who through his service would merit a transfer request, but in a summer that Benfica loses Garay, Luisao’s move would decimate the back line. So I can’t see LFV allowing it to happen.

Nani Coming Home?


 

After the embarrassing start to the Rojo situation reports suggest that Sporting are trying to turn the tables and have requested that Nani be included in any deal for Rojo. As reported it would be on loan, but Manchester United would be covering most of Nani’s wage bills. This would be a great coup for BdC, and having Nani back in the Liga would be the delight of not only the Sporting fans, but would make for some great games for Liga fans in general.
All in all it was a very interesting week in the Portuguese Liga with many talking points, especially 17 year old wonder boy Neves who impressed with his maturity and positioning. All in all it was an impressive start to the season, keep it locked here to PortugalFutbol.net for your Portuguese Football fix, and follow us on twitter as we post links to late breaking news regularly.