Benfica, FC Porto and Sporting kept the status quo at the top of the Primeira Liga as they chalked up comfortable wins against Belenenses, Arouca and Tondela respectively. In the process, the league’s top three scorers Bas Dost (Sporting), Tiquinho Soares (FC Porto) and Konstantinos Mitroglou (Benfica) added to their goal tally.
Benfica, knocked out of the Champions League by Borussia Dortmund, bounced back to beat Belenenses 4-0 with Almeida scoring after just twelve minutes.
The reigning champions had to wait until five minutes after the break to add number two when former Fulham man Konstantinos Mitroglou slotted home to bring his total to fifteen for the season.
Salvio was next on the score- sheet before Jonas added the coup de grâce in the final minute.
Benfica’s elimination from the Champions League means that the Curse of Bela Guttman continues.
In 1961 and 1962 Bela Guttman’s Benfica won the European Cup by beating Barcelona 3-2 and then the mighty Real Madrid 5-3. Guttman asked for a pay rise but his request was rejected by the Benfica directors and he stormed out of the club.
He left them with a parting shot, “Not in a hundred years from now will Benfica ever win another a European Cup” and since 1962 Benfica have been in seven European finals 1963, 1965, 1968, 1983, 1988, 1990 and 2013 against Chelsea…….and lost them all! FC Porto remain a point behind the Eagles after a 4-0 win at Arouca.
Danilo, Diogo and Tiquinho Soares (2) found the back of the net and the Brazilian striker’s brace of goals made it an impressive nine in six games since joining Porto from Vitória de Guimarães in January.
Before his transfer, Tiquinho Soares had bagged seven in sixteen games for the Vimtoanenses, thus bringing his total to sixteen for the season.
The most remarkable goalscoring feat of the weekend was by Bas Dost who snaffled all four goals in Sporting Lisbon’s 4-1 away win at bottom club Tondela.
The Dutch international was signed by Sporting last summer from Wolfsburg for €10m, potentially rising to €12 million and with a buyout clause of €60 million.
His four-goal haul has seen him notch up twenty-two goals in the same number of appearances.
The week for international friendlies commences on Monday so the ‘Big Three’, who all face teams in the lower half of the table - Sporting/Nacional, Paços de Ferreira/Benfica and FC Porto/Vitória de Setúbal - this weekend will be looking for another hatful of goals to further consolidate their positions.