Benfica beat Nacional 3-1 on Tuesday afternoon, in a match counting for the 32nd round of the Liga NOS.
The “eagles” were at a disadvantage from or minute 8, when Pedrão opened the dispute, and they had to go to the bank (of substitutes) to find the solutions to turn the marker around.
Darwin scored twice in the assists that another substitute Gonçalo Ramos ended the precept. Before, Pedrão had scored in his own goal. In the space of eight minutes, the “incarnates” made three attempts and left the islanders in a complicated situation with regard to the struggle for permanence.
The game explained in numbers
- In the islanders, Manuel Machado made only one change compared to the draw against Moreirense (2-2), Alhassan started Danilovic’s place. Gilberto, Nuno Tavares, Chiquinho, Pedrinho, Cervi and Waldschmidt were the novelties in the eleven “incarnate” in the Diogo Gonçalves (punished), Grimaldo, Vertonghen, Pizzi, Rafa Silva (injured) and Everton. Regarding the “classic” against FC Porto, only Helton Leite, Lucas Veríssimo, Otamendi, Weigl and Seferovic continued among the initial options, in a team designed in 1x4x4x2.
- The first danger signal was born in the host attack. Riascos threw a grenade and forced Helton Leite to show his reflexes. The warning was given. Seconds later, Riascos shot at the post and then Pedrão, unopposed, pushed to the back of the net and opened the count at minute eight. It was the central defender’s first goal in this edition of the championship.
- First 20 minutes of almost total domination of Nacional, which was more daring, cohesive, fast and dangerous. The Madeirans took advantage of the free way that they had on the opposite defensive right side and, thanks to the constant incursions by Riascos, they were collecting a series of opportunities. The numbers in this phase – eight shots (two framed) against the two (non-squared) of Benfica – left no room for any discussion.
- Only on 23 minutes did the outsiders come close to scoring. Cervi crossed the line for Seferovic that failed to finish. Seconds later, Nuno Tavares centered, but the Swiss header went over the top of the target. On the fourth attempt, the first framed shot appeared, which came out of Pedrinho’s feet, but António Filipe saved with ease.
- It was very easy for Nacional to get to the immediate area of the opponent’s area. After 33 minutes, Éber Bessa took advantage of yet another offer and narrowly missed the home advantage. At this stage, Pedrão was the player with the best rating, a rating of 6.5. In addition to goal, who was born in the only shot he made, defender accumulated 14 actions with the ball, two recoveries of possession and two reliefs.
- A goal scored in the initial phase put Nacional ahead of the scoreboard after the first 45 minutes. The set guided by Manuel Machado was the most dangerous, especially in the first 20 minutes. Solid to defend, the men of the house removed spaces from the “eagles” and whenever they attacked they created dangerous, especially taking advantage of the “avenues” that Gilberto gave in the right corridor, where a “spear” called Riascos did what he wanted. Pedrão was the MVP with a GoalPoint Rating from 6.6, which highlighted, in addition to the goal, the four reliefs he made (maximum in this part), two duels won in the three in which he intervened and the eight correct passes in 11 attempts.
- In view of the lack of patency in the first half, Jorge Jesus made three changes to the break: Cervi, Chiquinho and Pedrinho were in the changing rooms and, conversely, Grimaldo, Pizzi and Everton were launched. However, whoever was close to scoring was Nacional when Otamendi narrowly missed an own goal, again worth the attention of Helton Leite.
- The last classified had 11 shots (three framed) and Benfica six (only one was towards the target). The “eagles” also celebrated a goal by Nuno Tavares in the 50th minute, but after consulting the VAR, referee Rui Costa canceled the bid. In the genesis of the decision there was a lack of Lucas Veríssimo over Pedro Mendes.
- In the 78th minute the tie came. Grimaldo and Everton made the move, Seferovic shot and Pedrão deflected the ball into the Madeiran goal. It was only the second “red” shot that took the target’s direction.
- And the turnaround came three minutes later. Seferovic launched Darwin Núñez, the Uruguayan watched and Gonçalo Ramos, at first, pulled into the back of the opposing nets. It was the youngster’s first straight shot in this edition of Liga NOS and the third in the service of the main team this season.
- And three minutes later, Gonçalo Ramos’s 1-3 and encore. Darwin led the counterattack, “seated” Júlio César on the pitch and offered the goal to the Portuguese under-21 international, who did not hesitate. It was the Uruguayan’s ninth assist this season.
- O National, who has the worst defense of the competition with 54 goals allowed, he lost six of the last seven meetings he held in the Choupana. Benfica, who reached his sixth consecutive away win, still has hopes of reaching second place which gives direct access to the group stage of the Champions League.
The best in the field GoalPoint
Eighteen minutes, two shots, both framed, two goals – Expected Goals (xG) of 0.9 – and the certainty that deserves more opportunities in the main team. Gonçalo Ramos took advantage of the opportunity given by Jorge Jesus and was decisive in the turnaround that Benfica reached this Tuesday in the Choupana. Intelligent in handling and with a “killer” flair, the number 88 was the better in the field with a GoalPoint Rating from 7.2.
- Darwin Nunez 7.1 – Another of those responsible for the change that occurred in the course of the meeting. Quick and incisive, the Uruguayan shuffled the nationalist defensive, still tried to shoot on one occasion, but it was in the assist that he left his mark and was umbilically linked to Gonçalo Ramos’ encore. In addition, he scored three passes for finishing, three valuable passes and five actions with the ball in the opponent’s area. All of this in just 27 minutes of use.
- Everton 6.7 – Another card launched from the bank. Having a good time, with two goals in the last two rounds, this time he didn’t score, but he was decisive, impressing speed, unpredictability and creativity in the team’s actions. From his record, highlighting two shots, two passes for finishing and four effective dribbles in six attempts.
- Riascos 6.6 – A real devil on the loose. Strength, speed, verticality and always with the eyes on the opposite goal. He was the one who most often shot, six attempts in all, orchestrated three valuable passes, suffered five fouls (another maximum), had a maximum of seven actions with the ball in the Benfica area and was 100% effective in the four dribbles made. The score was not only higher due to the five losses of possession he recorded and the two dribbles allowed.
- Helton Leite 6.2 – He was the savior of Lisbon, always safe and was instrumental in collecting four defenses, which prevented the “aurinegros” from expanding the advantage.
- Awake Bessa 5.9 – He left on 71 minutes and the team ended up resenting him. While playing he was always one of the most enlightened, was close to expanding the score in the first half, accumulated four defensive actions in the opposing midfield, four tackles, two interceptions and blocked three passes (another maximum).
- Nuno Tavares 4.4 – It was not a happy return to “eleven”, poorly positioned in the defensive process and hasty to attack. Of the 70 passes made, 11 failed (84% effectiveness), won only one of the four defensive aerial duels in which he intervened, lost possession on 23 occasions (maximum negative in the match). In the best action he had in the game, he still scored, but the goal was later annulled.