Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Benfica advanced to the Champions League quarterfinals with a thrashing of Brugge

Benfica reach Champions League quarters by thrashing Brugge

 LISBON: Benfica defeated Club Brugge 5-1 in Lisbon's second leg of the Champions League last 16 on Tuesday to win 7-1 overall and Goncalo Ramos scored twice.

Ramos, who scored a hat trick in Portugal's World Cup victory over Switzerland and rose to prominence ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo, set up Rafa Silva's opening goal.

After halftime, the forward, who is 21 years old, scored two straight goals to help the two-time European Cup champions reach the quarterfinals for the second year in a row.

Soaring eagles! #UCL — UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) 1678228437000 Joao Mario scored from the spot in his fifth Champions League match in a row. Portugal great Eusebio was the last player for the club to accomplish this feat.

Benfica's fifth goal was scored by David Neres, and Bjorn Meijer scored a spectacular late consolation.

Roger Schmidt's ruthless team won the group, beating Scott Parker's knockout stage novices and heavyweights Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus.

Ramos stated to Eleven Sports, "It's always good (to score), a striker like me makes a living from that, but the most important thing was that we won and played well)."

"We will play the same way no matter who we get in the next round."

Benfica has only lost twice all season in all competitions, and they dominated the Belgian visitors from the start.

Rafa #UCL — UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) 1678226701000 Chiquinho, who has taken Enzo Fernandez's place in midfield since his January transfer to Chelsea, a Premier League record, returned to action for the hosts after suffering an injury.

Parker paired Noa Lang with Ukrainian striker Roman Yaremchuk against his former team in an effort to make an unlikely comeback.

After just two minutes, midfielder Joao Mario scored with a glorious flicked finish, but the goal was disallowed for offside in the buildup. Mario has been scoring a lot of goals this season.

Meijer then blocked the Portugal midfielder's shot that was headed for the goal.

At the Estadio da Luz, the hosts eventually took the lead when Silva was picked out well in the box by Ramos after 38 minutes.

Benfica advances to the round of eight #UCL — UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) 1678226145000 Silva beat former Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet with skillful finishing.

After being set up by Joao Mario, Ramos steered the second goal into the net just before the break.

He was decisive in the box once more and scored twice against Famalicao on Friday to keep the Portuguese league leaders eight points ahead.

Ramos broke inside from the left and shot back across himself into the bottom corner. He scored his 22nd goal of the season across all competitions, leaving Mignolet with no chance.

Joao Mario, who is just behind him on 20 goals and is having the best season of his career, is close behind him.

Benfica triumphs in style. #UCL — UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) 1678225868000 Early in the second half, the 30-year-old midfielder missed the target with a volley.

Brugge, who have only won two of their last 17 games, were a surprise package in the group stage and helped get rid of Atletico Madrid, but the Eagles took them out.

Before the hour mark, Ramos scored with a skillful first-time finish from Alex Grimaldo's low cross.

Following Abakar Sylla's careless foul on Gilberto, Joao Mario's coolly converted penalty added gloss to the score.

The midfielder's sixth goal of the tournament brought him level with Vinicius Junior of Real Madrid as the tournament's third highest scorer, even though five of his goals have come from the spot.

The youngest Portuguese player to score twice in a knockout round match Neres scored the fifth on a bruising night for Parker and his team. Benfica pulled one back through Meijer, but Benfica demonstrated that they will not be complacent in the next round.

Hans Vanaken, a midfielder for Brugge, said, "The result hits us hard."

"We shipped the goals too easily, so the way it happened was also painful.

"You don't want to go out like that," "I am emotional because we had a great campaign."

Since Eusébio, Joo Mário has become the first player for Benfica to score in five consecutive European Cup games. #UCL — UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) 1678234293000

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