Soccer / match reports
Benfica showed strength in extra time
This clash promised to be very interesting. In the first match the charges of Nenad Bjelica turned out to be better, who defeated Benfica players 1:0. Such a small advance payment guaranteed emotions in the return. The hosts were aware that they had to score a goal as soon as possible. The scouts who came to this meeting had a lot of work. On the pitch one could see many talented young players. The average age in both crews is just over 24 years. Squads: Benfica: Vlachodimos- Ribeiro (46' Grimaldo), Ferreira, Dias, Almeida- Zivkovic (46' Jonas), Gabriel, Fejsa, Pizzi (119' Fernandes)- Silva, Filipe (62' Felix) Dinamo Zagreb: Livakovic- Rrahmani, Dilaver, Theophile-Catherine, Stojanovic- Olmo, Moro, Gojak (97' Atiemwen)- Kadzior (75' Situm), Petkovic (86' Gavranovic), Orsic (109' Peric) From the very beginning it was clear which team had to make up for the losses. The hosts stayed on the ball longer, but not much resulted from it. They could not break through the tightly set defense of Zagreb players. With every minute they looked worse and worse. Frustration took the top and inaccurate plays appeared. Fans gathered at the stadium could no longer look at the awkwardness of their favourites and started to whistle. Guests did not let themselves be pushed to the defensive and tried to play the ball in a positional attack. Unfortunately, they also had no idea how to threaten their rivals' goals. So we watched long exchanges of applications in the middle of the field and individual actions, which did not bring the expected results. The first customs shot in this meeting was fired only in about 35 minutes. The first half was a big disappointment for me. I expected intense competition and many attacks from both sides, and instead, I watched a lot of inaccurate passes and fouls. After the break it simply had to be better. Benfica coach made two changes at the very beginning of the second part of the meeting. Jonas and Alex Grimaldo appeared on the pitch. The hosts improved their game and, with every minute passing, gained more and more advantage. Finally, the goalkeepers could show off their skills and defend a few shots. We had to wait up to 72 minutes for the opening of the result. The goal for Benfica was won by Jonas. The Brazilian sniper found himself perfectly in the area of the penalty field and decided to make a clever blow from the air. Dominik Livakovic did not manage to intervene and the stadium went crazy. So we had a draw in the two games and we could slowly get ready for overtime. It was impressive how the appearance of Jonas on the pitch changed the offensive actions of the hosts. The Brazilian himself did more for 10 minutes than his colleagues for the whole of the first half. Unfortunately, Dinamo's goalkeeper, who did not intend to capitulate for the second time, had his day. In the end we had a lot of actions from both sides, but none of the teams scored a decisive goal. The final decision was to be brought by extra time. Already four minutes after its beginning, Ferro hit the net. The Portuguese defender took the ball taken from the penalty field and showed off with a hellishly strong blow. In this situation the goalkeeper had no chance to defend himself. It was simply a perfect strike. In the 104th minute there was a rather unusual situation. Petar Stojanovic could not come to terms with the judge's decision to whistle the foul and...received first one and after a second the second yellow card for the discussion with the arbitrator. As a result, he went to the cloakroom earlier. A minute later Alex Grimaldo made a spectacular decision in this pair. He decided to hit even better than his colleague a few minutes earlier. He fired from behind the penalty box and the ball fell straight behind the back of the goalkeeper. Fans have already started celebrating at this point. By the end of the game nothing interesting happened and the final result of this two match is 3:1 for Benfica.