Franco Cervi might still be settling into his new life in Lisbon, but he is already dreaming of a trip to Marquês next May. After returning to the scoresheet during Benfica’s 4-0 victory over Feirense on Matchday 7, the Argentinean told A Bola how delighted he is with his new club, and how he has experienced a great deal of change in his life while adapting to a new country.

“I am very happy, I knew that I was coming to a very big club, but to arrive here, to start training, to get to know everything… the truth is that I was surprised. Things change a lot when you arrive at the club, when you get to know the facilities, the stadium is also tremendous. I was very pleased by the club where I came to play, it’s really great!”  

“Foremost in my mind is my arrival at Benfica. I am very happy to be here and I understand there is a lot about my game that needs improvement."

"This has been a very big change for me. I want to adapt well and claim my spot at the club.”

Cervi started off the season in style, helping Benfica to break the deadlock against Braga with an excellent solo goal in the Supertaça. Since then he has found it much more difficult to make it into Rui Vitória’s first eleven on a consistent basis, having made only 3 more appearances as a starter in the Liga NOS and Champions League.

“The squad has many solutions for every position on the field. There are great players who share my role and that motivates me."

"I need to seize every opportunity I am given due to the competition for the position.”

As has been a common theme with many of the younger players in the squad, Cervi has nothing but praise for Rui Vitória. Though he has yet to establish himself as an indisputable part of Benfica’s first team, the 22-year old spoke positively about his new manager.

“I have been very close to him and we converse a lot. He has been a great help for newly arriving players and he instills in us a strong feeling of importance to the team.”

Soon after arriving in Portugal, Cervi’s teammates told him all about the experience of celebrating titles at Lisbon’s famous monument to the 18th century statesman, the Marquis of Pombal (Marquês de Pombal). Nonetheless, the young winger recognizes that even with a three point lead at the top of the table, there is still plenty to play for to make these celebrations a reality.

“It was one of the first things that the people from the club told me."

"When I passed through there, it left me imagining the people there to celebrate the Championship. For a player, it must be wonderful!”

“There is still a long way to go and we are concentrating on improving upon everything that we can so that we can maintain our objective of reaching the end of the season in first place.”

Article co-written by Bruno Ribeiro and David Pritchett