André Silva: Fail or Flourish?


Helder Postiga and Andre Silva

This summer’s Confederations Cup confirmed what Portuguese football fans had hoped for some time: Portugal finally has a quality striker. In André Silva, Portugal has an intelligent, skillful player with maturity well beyond his young age. Skilled both in the air and with the ball at his feet, André Silva’s presence on the field clearly improves the Seleção’s play, and helps ease the goal-scoring burden from Cristiano Ronaldo.

After a successful debut 2016/2017 season at FC Porto, Silva made a big-money move to Italian giants AC Milan, a team in the midst of a massive squad overhaul. While it is exciting to see a young Portuguese prospect the subject of a monumental move to a major European team, the question always arises: Is it too soon? In this article, I will compare André Silva’s career trajectory to that of another young, promising Portuguese, Porto-bred striker in recent history: Hélder Postiga. Continue reading

Coentrao to be Involved in Bale Swap Deal


Fabio Coentrao – Real Madrid to Tottenham?

News has come out recently that Real Madrid have made Tottenham winger Gareth Bale their number one target for this upcoming transfer window. Bale has shown his credentials as one of the finest young wingers in the game at the moment, and Real hope to add him to their squad. In order to make the deal more attainable, according to reports, Real Madrid are prepared to include Fabio Coentrao in the deal. So, Coentrao would move to Tottenham, while Bale would move the opposite direction to Real Madrid. Coentrao would likely not find holding down a starting position very hard. Regardless of whether this move goes through, it is looking more likely every day that Fabio Coentrao will not be a Real Madrid player next season.

Transfer Roundup – 9/3/12


It was an interesting transfer deadline day last Friday, with much happening in the world of Portuguese football. Joao Moutinho was at the heart of much of the news, with his transfer to Tottenham collapsing at the absolute last moment. Although Moutinho stole most of the limelight, there were still lesser-known transfers that were completed.

Tiago Pinto

Rio Ave to Deportivo

Deportivo added to their Portuguese contingent with the capture of Tiago Pinto from Rio Ave. The left-back will most likely play second or third fiddle for the club, behind first-choice Evaldo. Pinto’s move abroad comes as no surprise after two sold seasons at Rio Ave, where he established himself as an important player for the club.

Nuno Coelho

Benfica to Aris (Loan)

After making the move from Academica to Benfica at the beginning of last season, Nuno Coelho has found playing time at Benfica non-existent. In an effort to gain more playing time, he was loaned out to Beira-Mar, in the Liga Zon Sagres, and played well all season long. Now, with his situation at Benfica much the same, he has looked abroad for opportunities. The midfielder has joined Greek outfit Aris on loan for the entire season, and will hope that the experience will be a positive one.

Sana

Free Agent to Academica

Much was expected of Sana following his impressive performances for the Portuguese team at the 2011 U-20 World Cup, but an ill-fated move abroad in Spain has proved detrimental. Now, Sana has made the move back to Academica, as they attempt to bolster their squad ahead of their Europa League campaign this season. Surely, Academica will be a great place for Sana to continue his development and realize his potential.

Carlitos

Hannover to Estoril

While playing at Basel, Carlitos was being courted by some of the biggest names in Italy, including Roma and Fiorentina. He is now returning to Portugal to play for newcomers Estoril, after injuries hampered a two-season stay at Bundesliga side Hannover. His talent is undoubted, so he will surely add much to Estoril’s team.

Henrique

Academica to Blackburn

Blackburn have increased the number of Portuguese players in the team to six after their last-minute capture of Academica central-defender Henrique. After being purchased from Braga at the beginning of the season, Henrique was promptly snapped up by the English club, having only appeared twice for the Portuguese club.

Yannick

Benfica to Toulouse (Loan)

Yannick has found playing time at Benfica hard to come by, after completing his move there last season. The move to Benfica was surely a relief after his cancelled transfer to Nice, but competition has been fierce. Competing with the likes of Salvio, Nolito, Ola John, and Gaitan (among others), Yannick opted to go out on loan, to ensure playing time. He will play at Toulouse for the remainder of the season, with an option to buy.

Ukra

Porto to Rio Ave (Loan)

Porto winger Ukra has joined Rio Ave on loan for the entire season, as his options at Porto appear limited. The winger was in much the same situation last season, and joined Braga on loan for the entirety of last season. Though he was impressive when he played, he was injured during the majority of the time at the club. An undoubted talent, Ukra will surely shine for Rio Ave this season.

 

Opinion: Will Tottenham Swoop for Moutinho?


News came out today that Croatian midfielder Luka Modric had completed Tottenham to Real Madrid for a staggering 33 million euros. This move thins out what was an already thick midfield in regards to talent. On Tottenham’s roster are the likes of Tom Huddlestone, Rafael Van der Vaart, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Jake Livermore, Scott Parker, and Sandro, all of whom are, or have been, regular internationals. Though it appears that more spending in the midfield may not be necessary, it appears that it will nevertheless happen.

All summer, Tottenham have been linked with a host of midfielders, in response to the almost imminent departure of star man Modric. One such player is Porto’s Joao Moutinho. Currently a mainstay of the Porto team, Moutinho dictates the play on the pitch. When he plays, Porto looks noticeably better. When he is benched, the team suffers. His role is that of a box-to-box midfielder. Gifted with loads of stamina, Moutinho will bounce around on the pitch, winning balls, and distributing them out. He’s not simply a tough player, though. At Porto, Moutinho has formed a reputation for being able to play a killer ball through the middle or out to the wings. This is much the same as Luka Modric at Tottenham. The two are similar in their basic strengths, but the are some minor differences (Modric is a better passer, Moutinho is scrappier). The gist of all of this is that Joao Moutinho and Luka Modric are similar players. Keep that in mind.

Joao Moutinho was born and raised a Sporting Lisbon player. He joined the Under-14 Sporting Lisbon team in 1999, aged just 13. He stayed at the club all the way until 2010, when Porto controversially purchased him. He, along with Miguel Veloso, was the crown jewel of the club, as he and Veloso’s development was because of the team’s youth setup. Moutinho was made vice-captain at age 19, and soon after, was named captain. It seemed like he would be a mainstay at Sporting for years to come. That was not to be the case however. An Andre Villas-Boas-led Porto bought him at the beginning of the 2010-2011 season, and he has never looked back. This move was a curious one, as Moutinho was arguably in the darkest part of his career at the time of his move to Porto. He had just been excluded from the Portuguese team at the World Cup, and had just come off a sub-par year with Sporting. On top of that, he was moving to a club in the midst of a change of managers; from one extremely experienced manager to an unproven rookie. Porto, it should also be said, had only achieved third place in the league the season before. Because of all of this, his move to Porto was a strange one, but it proved to be extremely fruitful.

It now appears that Moutinho may be reunited with Andre Villas-Boas at Tottenham. Last season, when Villas-Boas was the Chelsea boss, there was speculation that he would move for Moutinho. It’s no secret that Villas-Boas is a fan of Moutinho, but with the coach also weighing up moves for French international Yann M’Vila, Dutch international Ibrahim Afellay, Shakhtar star Willian, and American international Clint Dempsey, will a move for Moutinho actually happen?

Nani to Leave Manchester United?


Nani

Manchester United to Real Madrid, Manchester City, or Tottenham?

Manchester United winger Nani is reportedly unhappy at the club, and may be forced to leave if the situation does not improve. The winger wants to renew his contract at the club, but the officials in charge of such matters are slow to respond. Consequently, Nani has taken this to mean that he is not wanted at the English club, even though he very much wants to stay. If Nani were to decide to leave, there would be no shortage of clubs waiting in the wings, with Manchester City, Real Madrid, and Tottenham all reportedly interested.

Wanted: Manuel Fernandes


The heartbeat of the Besiktas’ midfield is Manuel Fernandes. There is no arguing that. Since joining the Turkish team on loan from Valencia in January 2011, Fernandes has come-of-age. His performances on loan were of such a high standard that at the end of the season, Besiktas opted to purchase him outright. Since then, he has been transformed from a talented player to a talisman for the Turkish team. The midfielder has scored six in all competitions this season, including two in his last two matches. He has also assisted countless others, which has helped him cement himself as one of Besiktas’s most important players.

While Manuel Fernandes’ talent has been undeniable, contract disputes and injuries have hampered any sort of consistency. Fernandes broke onto the scene for Benfica in the 2003-2004 season. In only his second game for the club, he scored, making him the second youngest goalscorer for the club. He soon established himself as an important member of the team, and, in the process, picked up his first cap for Portugal. After two loan spells abroad, both in England (for Portsmouth and Everton), Valencia snapped him up for a fee of around 18 million euros. At Valencia, injuries hampered his natural progress. After failing to make Unai Emery’s plans last season, he joined Besiktas on loan from January until the end of the season. After a successful half-season at the Turkish club, he was bough outright for 2 million euros. Since then, he has established himself as one of the finest midfielders playing in Turkey, and is considered by many to be a shoo-in for the Euro 2012 squad.

His fine performances for Besiktas have not gone unnoticed. Real Madrid and Tottenham are both said to be courting the midfielder. Reports coming out of Turkey even suggest that a 17 million pound deal has already been agreed between Tottenham and Besiktas for the midfielder. Though these reports appear to be untrue, a similar deal may not be too far off.

Juventus and Roma Following Yannick


According to reports coming out of Portugal, Yannick is being tracked by two of Italy’s biggest teams: Juventus and Roma. Yannick has been linked with a host of foriegn clubs recently, mainly from England. Tottenham was linked recently, but according to his agent, Yannick is close to signing a new contract with Sporting Lisbon. Yannick has been in impressive form so far this pre-season, most notably scoring a brilliant solo effort against Juventus. Yannick has been with Sporting for some time now, but has been impressive in spurts, not able to keep up his form from game to game. Yannick’s pace would suit him for the Premier League, but he is just as receptive to a move to the Serie A.

Yannick Tracked by English Clubs


Sporting forward Yannick Djalo,who is reportedly unhappy with his situation at Sporting, is being tracked by a host of English clubs. Yannick, as he is called, was supposedly very close to a move to Tottenham in the summer, but the move never materialized. Genoa, more recently, were said to be interested in the 24 year-old. Reports suggest that Tottenham, Fulham, and Everton are now in a race for his signature. These reports also suggest that these clubs are much more interested now than they were during the summer, so a move may be more likely.

Transfer Rumors – 10/26/10


As the winter transfer window nears, the rumors have started to heat up. Here’s the latest:

Bruma Still Being Tracked

16-year-old Portuguese starlet, Bruma, is reportedly still being tracked by Manchester City and Chelsea. Already a regular for the Portuguese Under-19 Team, Bruma has made a name for himself as the next of the talented youngsters to come out of the academy. After signing a pro-contract last week, interest in the player was thought to be diminished, but Tottenham has now joined Chelsea and City in the race for his signature.

Liverpool Watching Coentrao

English giant Liverpool are reportedly tracking Benfica winger Fabio Coentrao. Coentrao was of the few players who actually impressed for the Seleccao at last summer’s World Cup. Since then, he has become a regular for both the Portuguese National Team, and Benfica. Coentrao would be the second Portuguese at the club, after Raul Meireles. Would he be joining a “sinking ship?”

Juventus and City Tabling Bids

Sporting captain Daniel Carrico is currently being tracked quite closely by Manchester City and Italian giants, Juventus. Carrico has been tracked for some time now by top clubs, most recently by Spartak Moscow, but has pledged his future to the club. Delneri, the Juventus coach, spoke of Carrico, saying: “Carriço is a fantastic player with great potential, which we followed for some time. Juventus is always attentive to the great values that stand in world football and a player Carriço is very interesting, still relatively young”

Rocha and Teixeira Make Late Moves


For some reason, all of the good moves happen late. Former Benfica defender Ricardo Rocha, who has played for the likes of Tottenham and Standard Leige, has recently been without a club. Portsmouth, trying to fill the void that will be left from Kaboul’s departure to Tottenham, snatched up the injury-prone defender.

Elsewhere, Felipe Teixeira has made a loan move from West Brom to Barnesley. This move will be good for the Portuguese midfielder who has gotten limited playing time for the Championship side.