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Post Match Views: Académica 1 - 3 Benfica - 26 November 2007

José Camacho recognises that the Benfica players are giving their everything on the pitch during difficult games.

"We were expecting many difficulties because it's always like this after important International games. We missed players and Académica played their game. Anything could have happened in the end, the game didn't start well but the players are giving everything for Benfica."

"Now we have to recover our players for the important Champions League encounter against AC Milan. We have to think about each game at a time."

Petit praised team attitude in the second half.

"We knew it was going to be an extremely diffcult game. It isn't easy turning a result around like we did. In the second part we had another attitude, we are in good form. With the International break it was always going to be hard, but it's important to get back on winning terms."

"We have tough games coming ahead of us and we have to try and maintain the same attitude we did in the second half against Académica.""

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Report: Académica 1 - 3 SL Benfica - 24 November 2007

Two late Benfica goals sealed an important win for the visitors in the pursuit for first place. Rui Costa equalized in the first half but it took Luisão and Freddy Adu to cement the three points.

Académica started motivated with a purpose to cause an upset but Benfica settled well within the first 15 minutes. Chances were half for both sides but the attacking presence kept the game interesting. There was an early substitution for the visitors when Cardozo came on for the injured Nuno Assis.

The home side took the lead from a badly taken free kick which rebounded off the wall back to N'Doye for a second scuffled shot. Luís Filipe made an atrocious attempt to clear the lines but instead it found Lito who got Académica off the mark. His half volley cut diagonally across from the right to Quim's left hand post.

Without the likes of Rodriguez and Maxi Pereira, Di María was handed a start, and nearly justified it when he hit the post moments later as Nuno Gomes made Ricardo save the leftovers. Di María was later brought down on the edge of the area after a ferocious counter attack, and Rui Costa made it count with a sweet low footed shot into the corner.

The second half saw the much awaited return of the Portuguese International Petit, and Freddy Adu also came on in the expense of Nuno Gomes who looked frustrated coming off with still half an hour to go.

Things looked bleak for Benfica with 5 minutes to go. But then came an early Christmas present from goalkeeper Ricardo as he made a howler of a long throw-in and found himself in no man's land. Binya's throw wasn't dealt with by Académica and the ball was left at Luisão's mercy, who knew the keeper was off his line and decided to backheel into the net.

Freddy Adu made it three in injury time when he shot low to near post from the edge of the area. The ball went in off the post in an unfashionable manner as Ricardo's touch created a spin for it to swerve out and in to the goal.

Benfica move one point away from first spot and create a bigger gap with Sporting as they only managed a draw at Leixões.

Date: 24th November 2007 21:15 GMT
Venue: Estádio Municipal de Coimbra, Coimbra
Referee: Olegário Benquerença
Assistant Referees: João Santos and José Cardinal
Attendance: 16,165

ACADÉMICA - Ricardo; Nuno Piloto, Litos, Kaká and Pedro Costa; Paulo Sérgio and Pavlovic (Hélder Barbosa 88'); Lito, N'Doye and Ivanildo (Miguel Pedro 45'); Vouho (Joeano 59').

BENFICA - Quim; Luís Filipe, Luisão, David Luiz and Léo; Katsouranis (Petit 60') and Binya; Nuno Assis (Cardozo 10'), Rui Costa and Di Maria; Nuno Gomes (Freddy Adu 62').

Goals: 0-1, Lita (24'); 1-1, Rui Costa (33'); 1-2, Luisão (86'); 1-3, Freddy Adu (90+3')
Disciplinary action: Yellow card to Katsouranis (41'), Vouho (47'), Luisão (63'), Paulo Sérgio (74'), N'Doye (77') and Ricardo (80')

Highlights: Académica 1 - 3 SL Benfica

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Camacho confirms Maxi and Rodriguez absence - 23 November 2007

The Benfica manager confirmed that Rodriguez and Maxi will not be taking part in the game tomorrow in a press conference where he also gave his views for the encounter in Coimbra.

"They are two players that have been playing regularly and will not be travelling to Coimbra for obvious reasons. They have arrived late from International duty and very tired. Rodriguez isn't even here yet and that's a problem with the nationals teams they play in. But we have to take into account that they must play at their clubs, otherwise it isn't helping us."

"All the games we played have been difficult, but we have surpassed our obstacles. Académica is a team that plays well in the counter-attack and we must be cautious with that tactic. We have to impose our football."

Camacho has yet to figure out if he will pair Nuno Gomes with a striker, but has confirmed that the Portuguese International will start, with or without Cardozo.

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Académica x SL Benfica Squad List - 23 November 2007

After being sidelined for over two months Portuguese International midfielder Petit returns to the squad list for tomorrow's game in Coimbra at 21:15 GMT. José Camacho also recalled Nélson to the side after recovering from his injury and opted to bet on Mantorras over Bergessio.

David Luíz is included and may play a part in a competitive fixture for the first time since late August. Uruguayans Cristian Rodriguez, health, and Maxi Pereira, physical condition, have been left out.

The 18 players called up are:

Goalkeepers: Quim and Butt
Defenders: Luís Filipe, Léo, Nélson, David Luíz, Luisão and Edcarlos
Midfielders: Petit, Bynia, Katsouranis, Rui Costa, Nuno Assis, Di María and Freddy Adu
Forwards: Cardozo, Nuno Gomes and Mantorras

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Maxi is happy at Benfica - 23 November 2007

The Uruguayan stated he is passing through a good phase in his career playing regularly in Benfica and winning a starting place in his national side. He also confirmed that his team mate Rodriguez was having problems with his health.

"It's important for any player to play and score goals. I'm happy in Benfica and I am also playing for my national team... Rodriguez isn't feeling very well, he called me up to talk about the situation."

Maxi played the full 90 minutes in the defeat against Brazil for the World Cup qualifying stages where his side took the lead but lost 2-1in the end.

"It's normal that I am tired after the Brazil game. I will now focus in recovering for the game against Académica and then the coach will decide and talk to me."

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Nuno Gomes believes in victory over Milan - 23 November 2007

Nuno Gomes admits that it will not be easy to win against AC Milan, but thoroughly believes his side can do it on Wednesday night. The forward was present at a book launch by José Nunes called «Linha Avançada» [The Forward Line], a collaborator with Radio Antenna 3.

"It's not impossible. We will see how the game tomorrow against Académica goes and then think about AC Milan. We won't have much time to recover in physical terms, but we will just have to wait and see. I can't tell you the result but we need the three points if we want to continue thinking about qualifying from the group. We will try and win!"

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Rodriguez to miss Académica game - 23 November 2007

The Uruguayan Football Federation advised Cristian Rodriguez not travel back to Portugal due to his health and is sure to miss 11th «jornada» match in Coimbra. Benfica are four points away from the leaders and will want to take all points from Académica to put pressure on Porto.

Versatile winger Rodriguez will now only be available for the crucial Champions League game against AC Milan at the Estádio da Luz on 28th November, he is Benfica's top assister in all competitions and has scored 3 goals this season too.

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Benfica face Académica in cup - 22 November 2007

In the draw for the fourth round of the Portuguese Cup Benfica were pit against a Liga BWIN side, but they will be playing at home on the December 9th 2007 at the Estádio da Luz.

Benfica also face Académica this Saturday for the 11th «jornada» and the game will be played in Coimbra at 21:15 GMT. Académica are 13th with 8 points winning only once this season in the league.

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Benfica sign Yartey for 18 months loan deal - 21 November 2007

Ishmael Yartey, the 17-year old midfielder of Ghana, has signed a loan contract valid for one and a half years starting from the 15th January 2008.

The player is already at Benfica's Seixal training camp with the junior squad. The left-footed attacking midfielder, much followed by international agents, contributed to great performances for Ghana in the Under-17 World Cup which was recently held in South Korea.

Benfica have the option to sign the player outright if he impresses the club.

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Luisão has faith in group - 19 November 2007

Luisão puts faith in the unity of the squad and with patience Benfica will start achieving what's expected in due time. The Brazilian defender is determined to get closer to Porto, but will not worry how far they are.

"We had a change in management early in the season, and the normal games served as adaptation for the players, but I think the team is growing now."

"When we started getting closer and winning games we felt like we were getting stronger. At the moment everything is running smoothly and we have to continue like this."

"We never worry with whoever is in front of us, be it Sporting or Porto. The manager always says to worry about ourselves only, no matter what the position of our opponents."

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- More News -
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    Jornal Benfica - Browse an archive of press front pages

    Moreira, the loyal goalkeeper
    In a country where a good, consistent, solid goalkeeper is hard to find since the days of legendary Vitor Baia, Jose Moreira was tipped by many to become the next Portuguese goalkeeping star. Click here to read the farewell article on Benfica's loyal goalkeeper.
    Nuno Gomes, farewell Legend
    Hard worker, team player, and humble. Those are the three words that describe Nuno Gomes, or what most fans called him, Nuno Golos. Click here to read the farewell article on Benfica's former captain.
    Benfica according to Domingo Soares
    Benfica Magazine 'Mistica' interviewed Benfica SAD Administrator Domingo Soares de Oliveira in their May 2009 issue. The important figure reveals accounts and strategies for the club's future and gives a personal insight on the world of Benfica. Click here to read the extracts of the exclusive interview.
    Benfica Cheerleaders
    Get bored no more at half-time. The beautiful Benfica cheerleaders were a hot transfer in 2007/08 season and were present at every home Liga Sagres game until 2008/09. Did the average attendance go up slightly? Click here to see the gallery and find out for yourself!
    Estádio da Luz construction
    Inaugurated in 2003, Estádio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica was built mainly during 2002/03 to replace the famous Estádio da Luz for the 2004 European Championships. With the finals in mind, the 5-star rated venue was designed for the greatest games and events, continuing the tradition of the biggest stadium in Portugal. Click here to see images of how the Cathedral was built.

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