Highlights: Vitória de Guimarães 0 - 2 Benfica




Vitória hits back in refereeing debate

Rui Vitória

Benfica face a tough test on Saturday evening when they face Vitória de Guimarães at the Estádio D. Afonso Henriques. After a tenth-placed finish last season, the northern outfit are currently fifth in the Liga NOS, with only goal difference separating them from Sporting. A win would take them level on points with third-placed Braga, so Rui Vitória is not underestimating the scale of the task ahead.




Squad List: Vitória de Guimarães x Benfica

Rui Vitória has named a 21-man preliminary squad for Matchweek 16 of the Liga NOS. Júlio César and Eduardo Salvio are both included after recovering from their respective shoulder injuries. 

Ljubomir Fejsa, Luisão, Victor Lindelöf and Franco Cervi all return after being rested against Vizela, but Raúl Jiménez is still absent with a groin strain. Álex Grimaldo (abdomen) and Eliseu (thigh) remain in the treatment room, where they have been joined by Guillermo Celis (knee).

Saturday's game at the Estádio D. Afonso Henriques kicks off at 18:15 local time.

Goalkeepers: Ederson and Júlio César

Defenders: Lisandro, Luisão, Lindelöf, Jardel, André Almeida and Nélson Semedo

Midfielders: Fejsa, Samaris, André Horta, Carrillo, Zivkovic, Salvio, Pizzi, Cervi, Rafa Silva and Danilo

Forwards: Jonas, Mitroglou and Gonçalo Guedes




Vitória responds to Lindelöf speculation

Victor Lindelöf

Victor Lindelöf continues to be linked with a January move to José Mourinho's Manchester United, for a fee of around €45 million. The Swede's agent, Hasan Cetinkaya, has confirmed that transfer negotiations are well underway, although he has so far refused to mention United by name. Speaking after Benfica's 2-0 win over Rio Ave on Wednesday evening, Rui Vitória conceded that the defender's departure is highly likely.




Highlights: Benfica 2 - 0 Rio Ave




Benfica out to halt Rio Ave's winning run

Benfica host Rio Ave at the Estádio da Luz tonight in what is their final league fixture of 2016. Depending on the result, the Eagles will start the new year with a one, two or four point lead over Porto at the top of the Liga NOS. The visitors are not to be taken lightly however, having won four consecutive matches since the appointment of ex-Porto B coach Luís Castro, a fact that Rui Vitória is fully aware of.




Squad List: Benfica x Rio Ave

Rui Vitória has named an unchanged squad for the midweek visit of Rio Ave. André Horta has overcome his thigh injury, but was not deemed fit enough for selection.

Júlio César (shoulder), Eliseu (thigh), Álex Grimaldo (abdomen) and Eduardo Salvio (shoulder) remain in the treatment room, while Danilo has been overlooked once again.

Wednesday's game at the Estádio da Luz is scheduled for 18:00 Portuguese time.

Goalkeepers: Ederson and Paulo Lopes

Defenders: Lisandro, Luisão, Lindelöf, Jardel, André Almeida and Nélson Semedo

Midfielders: Fejsa, Samaris, Carrillo, Živković, Pizzi, Cervi, Rafa Silva and Celis

Forwards: Raúl Jiménez, Jonas, Mitroglou and Gonçalo Guedes




Coach and matchwinner welcome Jonas back to the fold

Jonas Pistolas

Benfica continued their pursuit of a fourth consecutive league title with a nerve-wracking 1-0 win over Estoril on Saturday night. The visitors got their noses in front with a 61st minute penalty, which was dispatched with typical composure by Raúl. It was not a vintage performance from the Eagles, who were indebted to Ederson's goalkeeping and Estoril's profligacy in the dying minutes.




Highlights: Estoril 0 - 1 Benfica




Vitória denies pressure and Estoril call a doctor

Ljubomir Fejsa

Estoril welcome Benfica to the Estádio António Coimbra da Mota on Saturday night, on Matchweek 14 of the Liga NOS. The Canaries parted company with head coach Fabiano Soares last weekend, following a 2-0 away defeat to Vitória Setúbal. His replacement, Pedro Gómez Carmona, was in the stands to see Estoril's midweek cup win over Sanjoanense, and officially started work on Thursday.




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