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Portugal's Great Divide (feat Feliks)

A dual story, detailing the epic battle in Portugal between the 2 biggest clubs - SL Benfica and FC Porto.
Started on 16 March 2015 by Xander
Latest Reply on 3 May 2015 by Xander
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^^^ I like lol
Great update,hopefully we won't have to wait too long for the next.
@feliks - regardless of who you play, it is going to be an easy win for the other team.

@the champi0n fm - thanks for your reply, both Feliks and myself are back now so hopefully the updates are now daily and just as good.
Porto definitely had a better pre season, but I am still rooting for Benfica!
Feliks's avatar Group Feliks
5 yearsEdited

Luisao lifting the Supertaca trophy last night for Benfica broke a 5 year winning streak by arch rivals FC Porto and the 4-3 win for SLB was thoroughly deserved considering the circumstances, despite a great effort from Rio Ave.

The game got off to a controversial start in the 4th minute when Rio Ave's centre back Roderick clattered into Benfica's Jonas in the box. The cultured Brazilian converted his penalty, with his shot simply too powerful for Cassio and giving Benfica the perfect start.

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Jonas salutes to the crowd after scoring the first goal of the game


However the plucky Rio Ave attack managed to draw a controversial goal back themselves, with Cassiano squeezing through the offside trap in the 10th minute. Despite huge protest from Lisandro Lopez, the goal stood and the 8,000 strong Rio Ave supporter base cheered wildly as they equalised.

The game clearly taking an attacking stance meant the goals flowed, with Jonas and Cassiano both adding additional goals in the 31st and 38th minute. At half time, there was nothing in it with the scores locked at 2-2.

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Individual heroics from debutant Cassiano kept Rio Ave in the game

After the break, both teams looked lively although Benfica had the slight upper hand in possession. Disaster struck for the Primeira Liga heavyweights in the 57th minute, as a careless tackle by debutant Lucas Romero gave him his second yellow card. It had taken 8 minutes to go from clean to off, and Benfica had 43 minutes to survive with 10 men.

Rio Ave took full advantage of the situation, and with an extra man at the corner, swamped the Benfica defence. Luisao's clearing header could only fall into the both of Rio Ave vice captain Villas-Boas and the centre mid slammed home an emphatic goal, giving his team a 3-2 lead.

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The 31 year old gave Rio Ave what looked like an unassailable lead


But the epic game still had 42 minutes to be played out, and eventually it took one of the greatest individual bursts in Portuguese history. Dutchman Ola John, in the 65th minute, collected the ball just outside the penalty box and threaded a pass into Jonas. The winger jinked outside, looking for a return pass but instead saw the Brazilian take a shot. Unpertubed, he ran on, collected the parry and saw it into the back of the net.

With the game level, John continued his frenzy but this time on his own. Receiving a pass from Ruben Amorim, he turned on the spot roughly 30 yards from the goal on the right wing and used pure pace to get past Tiago Pinto. Now inside the penalty box, the Dutchman made a final, subtle touch to give him room, and eluding Alan Costa/s challenge, put it past the outstretched fingers of Cassio. All of a sudden Benfica had wrestled the game back.

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Ola John, the flying Dutchman


From there on, it appeared Rio Ave's will power had dissipated, and you can't blame them. In the end, it was the superior team that won the day, regardless of setbacks, and Benfica will look to continue this form into the season ahead.
Lucky win, Rio Ave fully deserved the win. Good luck in the derby, you will need it.
Nice way to start the season mate but that defence will need a tweak when you come up agaisnt the big 2.
#goporto

Lets get it trending people
Well done feliks getting your season of to a winning start.
Xander Let's let the game do the talking.

Walkin Yeah sure will, although Romero getting sent off didn't help.

Champion Cheers bud.

Romanian starlet Dorin Rotariu has spoken to journalists today, stating his pure excitement for the upcoming clash with fierce rivals FC Porto. The 19 year old is of course no stranger to rivalries, having played in the epic Steau-Dinamo clash in Romania. However even he admits the O Classico is another game in itself.

"I've seen clips of the past games and it's amazing how the atmosphere pushes the players further. Derbies always bring out the best in players and I want to do the same."

After moving to Benfica for a hefty sum of £5,000,000, the left winger has not disappointed with a brilliant league debut against Vitoria Guimaraes. Rotariu scored 2 goals in a matter of minutes to snatch the draw for his team, and with Nicolas Gaitan unlikely to be starting, the Romanian could be the star once more in the derby.

SLB star Nicolas Gaitan looks to be failing in his bid for fitness

However, a problem Rotariu and his counterpart Ola John face is the formidable wing back pairing at FC Porto, with Danilo and Alex Sandro renowned as the best in their position in the Primeira Liga. Rotariu acknowledges it will be tough.

"Yeah I'll admit Danilo will be tough for me, he is a great player and deserves his reputation. Luckily for me, I don't have a reputation in Portugal so perhaps I can create one by outplaying him. The pressure is certainly on him."

SL Benfica will play FC Porto at Estadio Da Luz on the 23rd of August.
Not sure what he is looking forward to. It is going to be a Porto demolition in the Derby and then followed on by the rest of the season.

The O Classico Derby

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Good evening everyone and welcome to Estadio Da Luz, Portugal’s premier sporting stadium, for what is undoubtedly the biggest game in Portugal. Attracting a capacity crowd regardless of the venue, the O Classico Derby is one of the world’s best rivalries and I’m joined by Xander Dunlop who will be covering proceedings today with myself, Feliks Zemdegs.

Thanks Feliks, great to be here.

So the O Classico divides Portugal, and I believe we have a divide ourselves? I’m a Benfica fan and Xander, I believe you are a fan of FC Porto?

Yes Feliks I very much am a fan of Porto and I hope it is going to be a terrific game and one for the ages. Really looking forward to this one and the mentality both these managers take into it.

Well without further ado, let’s have a look at the line ups.


A slightly weakened Benfica team as we can see, Nicolas Gaitan didn’t make the cut and will start on the bench due to fitness issues and Cicinho has been shunted to unfamiliar territory at left back with Eliseu and Benito injured. Jonas has been dropped as well, with Lima heading the attack, whilst Lucas Romero returns from suspension to line up alongside Andre Almeida in central midfield. Lisandro Lopez and Luisao are once more starting at centre back and Luisao’s ex-Brazil teammate Julio Cesar is between the sticks.

FC Porto

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Before I even comment on the line up, I would just like to say that the formation Futre has gone with is something that I have never seen before. The rest of the squad is arguably the strongest group that Futre could put together. With arguably the strongest attacking line up in the league, Jackson Martinez and Vincent Aboubakar up top, they will have many goal scoring oppurtunites and will be created by Brahimi in behind them. The midfield are very creative but lack the strength that other clubs do and the defence is very strong.

Final Predictions

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Even with my bias, I have to look at that Porto and say, yep, they’ve got the upper hand. I think without Gaitan and a true left back, Benfica are lacking in class and they’ll need a big effort to overcome this talented Porto line up. Lopez and Luisao need to stand up to Martinez or they’ll be in trouble.

I would be crazy to say that I do not think Porto will win. Benfica are missing arguably their strongest player in Gaitan and hopefully our midfield will be a lot more creative than theirs and finds ways to sneak through the defence. I see Martinez bagging two and a convincing 3-1 win.

Kick Off

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And we’re underway, Martinez rolls it to Adrian and 57,000 fans are readying themselves for 90 minutes of top class football.

8th Minute Chance - SLB 0-0 FCP

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It is a Porto throw in here, Hughes gives it to Brahimi. He plays Jackson Martinez over the top!! 1V1 with the keeper, and it has just gone wide. Terrific play from Porto there and good work from Cesar to cut down the space before he shot as well.

12th Minute Chance - SLB 0-0 FCP

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Andre Almeida sprays a pass out wide for Benfica and it’s gonna be Ola John who picks it up, he tries to break past Hughes and Angel but is stopped at the box, passes it out wide to Pereira who swings in a first time cross, it’s served to Lima on a silver platter…. GOAL BENFICA!!! Lima scores a simple goal, it was really all down to Maxi Pereira’s great cross, but that is what he is paid to do! 1-0 Benfica after just 12 minutes and Porto have some thinking to do.

13th Minute Chance - SLB 1-0 FCP

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Porto kick off after conceding, a terrible pass from Herrera early. Ola John is coming down the wing now, wow he has some terrific pace. He whips in the little cross and TALISCA IS THERE FOR THE GOLAZOOOOOO A TERRIFIC FINISH RUNNING AT SPEED. This is terrible defending from my Porto though, 2-0 already against Benfica. Looking at you Futre.

23rd Minute Chance - SLB 2-0 FCP

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Great strong running from Lima and he’s been given a rest, passing to inside to Maxi Pereria who’s playing very centrally at the moment. He lays it off to Almeida, who’s got a bevy of options and choose a safe pass to the top of the box to Talisca, the youngster is always dangerous here, shoots it off wide to Rotariu, and OH MY! What a move from the Romanian, shrugs Danilo off and is one on one with the goalie…. GOOOOOOL BENFICA! DORIN ROTARIU, TAKE A BOW, THAT WAS INSPIRATIONAL! And now it’s 3-0 and Paulo Futre is wondering how it has all gone so wrong, so early!

29th Minute Chance - SLB 3-0 FCP

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Free kick here to Benfica, Maxi Pereira to whip in the cross and LIMA IS THERE TO SCORE ANOTHER GOOOL, 4-0!?!!?! WHAT IS GOING ON WITH PORTO. There is absolute mayhem going on near the Porto bench and Paulo Futre does not look happy with his side during the opening O Classico. Breathtaking stuff from Benfica.

31st Minute Tactical - SLB 4-0 FCP


Well Futre is clearly furious, he’s dragging 3 of his players and looking to change things up. Diego Reyes comes off for Martins Indi, Casemiro is off for Oliver and he’s decided to try and nullify Ola John by bringing on first teamer Alex Sandro at left wing back. He’s decided to put some patience in Danilo for now, but this could be a risky move using all 3 substitutes in the first half-hour.

45th Minute Chance - SLB 4-0 FCP

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Danilo with the throw to Brahimi, he plays it outside the box to Will Hughes, a TERRIFIC pass from the youngster into Oliver Torres who shoots! IT HITS THE CROSSBAR!! ADRIAN IS THERE FOR THE REBOUND. Right on the stroke of halftime Porto bring one back to add some sort of respectability to this score line.

Half Time - SLB 4-1 FCP



Well, I certainly wasn’t expecting that and I don’t think most Benfica fans did either. Four one, an emphatic lead to Jesus’ boys, and even with that late goal for Porto you’d think the game would be beyond them at this stage. Xander, your thoughts?

I have no words to describe the opening 45 minutes of play. From the get go it looked like Porto were on top. Then Ola John started running and they could cope with anything that he did, his crossing was terrific as well. Paulo Futre just needs to stay calm and build on the slight bit of momentum they have from the Adrian goal.

Well the second half appears to be underway, let’s get back into the action with the score, SL Benfica 4, FC Porto 1.

50th Minute Chance - SLB 4-1 FCP

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Almeida collects the ball in the centre of the park, sprays the ball out wide to John, Ola John just speeds past Sandro, where was he!!!! John’s through, one on one but a tough angle…. oh unlucky, it’s parried away but he shouldn’t have been there in the first place, what was Alex Sandro doing?

57th Minute Chance - SLB 4-1 FCP

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Danilo with a chance to attack from the throw in, throws it straight to Cicinho….. No words for that. Rotariu runs upfield and plays the short ball to Lima, who plays it back to him. Terrific Benfica play. Rotariu back to Lima again and it is 5…. Lima finishes off his hat-trick and just kicks Porto in the guts.

61st Minute Chance - SLB 5-1 FCP

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Oliver plays a long, hanging ball upfield looking for Martinez, who stops and props waiting for support in the midfield. He sees Adrian charging into the box, the pass perhaps too soft, Adrian is forced to double back. Good control, lays it back to Sandro, who gets past Romero and now back to Adrian, great build up play as the Brazilian threads the ball through to Martinez, Martinez!!!! Wonderful team goal from FC Porto, but way too late you’d think from here.

79th Minute Chance - SLB 5-2 FCP

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The ball is going from either end of the park here. A moment ago Oliver Torres had the ball on the edge of the box, now Alex Sandro is playing it back to the keeper. Anyway, Hughes has it in the middle. He gives it to Martinez who shoots! Oh terrific shot but it shatters against the crossbar and the score remains 5-2.

80th Minute Tactical Change - SLB 5-2 FCP


With the game almost over, Jesus has brought off some players for rotation. Ola John trudges off with a standing ovation, whilst Nicolas Gaitan is on for a bit of game time. It must be said, John and Rotariu have been incredible today, completely dominated the FC Porto wing backs. It’s gonna be hard seeing Gaitan get back into this side.

Full Time - SLB 5-2 FCP


What an emphatic win by Benfica, no one saw that coming! I definitely didn’t see it coming, how about you Xander?

Well Feliks, I can certainly say Benfica blew me out of my seat with that one. I will admit that was an absolutely terrific display of football from them and I have no idea what just happened.

I’m sure a wide range of football fans would agree with you there, except Benfica fans of course. Where do you think Porto went wrong? For me, it would have to be that lack of width. Cicinho, Pereira, John, Rotariu - all starred today and Porto had nothing to counter it.

They could not cope with Ola John at all, his display out there was one of the most destructive displays from a winger I have ever seen, his incredible speed and accurate dribbling made him impossible to beat. Not to mention his accurate crossing that gave easy finishes to his strikers. The defending from Porto didn’t help at all.

So having said that, would you say he was best on ground?

He was by far the best on ground, despite the hat-trick from Lima I just don’t think you can take anything away from Ola John. It was really a destructive performance.
I’ll have to agree with you there Xander, I liked Rotariu, Talisca and Lima’s games but Ola John was simply incredible. Looking at the circumstances as well, Nicolas Gaitan is waiting in the wings ready to take someone’s spot in the team and you’d think it would be John. So he comes out with a performance like that. Simply brilliant from the Dutchman.

So, that wraps up another broadcast of O Classico, Portugal’s biggest game, with SL Benfica defeating FC Porto 5 goals to 2. We’ll see you again later in the year, but until then, I’m Feliks Zemdegs and this has been ‘Portugal’s Great Divide.’
What a performance Feliks but what were you doing with your formation Xander :(
the champi0n fm - i was trying a custom version of Statistical Approaches "Diamond Dominator" but after the performance against Benfica I made a new one. My midfielders didn't perform how I wanted them

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