Benfica vs Newcastle United Europa League match banter!

Posted on April 4th, 2013 | 68 Comments |

Benfica v Newcastle United in the Europa League.
Jesus vs Pardew – Who will come out on top?
Venue: Estadio da Luz, Lisbon.
Date: Thurs 4th April, 2013.
Kick off: 8.05pm.
Referee: Antony Gautier (France).

Hello, good evening and welcome to our “match banter” for this evening’s Europa League clash against Benfica from the Estadio da Luz in Lisbon.

Before I proceed further, you might also be interested in my two part guide to Benfica here and here.

Now I’ve got that out of the way, the first piece of good news is that due to an major oversight by UEFA, they have allowed a French referee called Antony Gautierto officiate. Don’t they realise that Newcastle United are a French team now?

Another piece of possible good news (for Newcastle anyway) is that Benfica’s primary right winger and one of their biggest goalmakers and goalscorers, Eduardo Salvio, could be an injury doubt with his knee. Having written that though, there are still several very able players who could step into the breach. It is also true that Benfica’s injury worries are still less than our own, with Salvio being about the only top player who might be a concern.

Meanwhile, Alan Pardew has done what he does best, potentially starting a diplomatic incident with all Portuguese football fans (not just Benfica ones) by comparing their most succesful side ever, a team who have been in seven European Cup finals, winning two, by suggesting they could only be a “top eight or ten team” in the Premiership like West Brom, Swansea or Fulham. The Silver Supremo speculated:

“Looking at the quality of them (Benfica) and the fact that they are a Champions League team this year, plus they are already confirmed for (Champions League) next year. You have to say they would certainly be a top eight or ten team in the Premier League.”

I think he meant well, but he is Alan Pardew after all.

Meanwhile, Benfica’messiah Jorge Jesus responded by subtly reminding Pardew of something Pardew will certainly prefer to forget on his little Portuguese holiday, Newcastle United’s execrable Premier League form, saying:

“Leagues are different, so how we are doing and how Newcastle are doing in their league will not mean too much. Europa League football is different. Newcastle are a very strong team, they have only lost one game in the competition.”

On the evening’s match he continued:

“It will not be decided in the first leg so we need to make sure we finish the 90 minutes in a strong position. All teams in the quarter-finals are strong teams. There is not much between the teams at this stage, so Newcastle will be a strong team.

In what some might see as another very subtle dig back at Pardew’s comments, he also remarked:

“In the last few years we have beaten Manchester United, Everton – so it is understandable the English are looking at us like we are a team doing well.

“What we have to do is focus on Benfica, this great team.”

But enough manager’s handbags and pre match speculation, we shall see how this first leg pans out soon enough! For now I will just get on with my usual reminders that although the game will be broadcast live on ITV 4 in the UK, I will be posting links to watch the game online for those of you who might be overseas or whatever, as well as posting team-sheets, and finally, match highlights and a full match video when the game is over!

Howay the Lads!

Team sheets.

Benfica (4-3-3): Artur (G), Andre Almeida, Luisao (C), Ezequiel Garay, Melgarejo, Nicolas Gaitan, Nemanja Matic, Andre Gomes, Rodrigo, Oscar Cardozo, Ola John.

Subs: Paulo Lopes (G), Roderick, Maxi Pereira, Enzo Perez, Urreta, Pablo Aimar, Lima.

Newcastle United (4-2-3-1): Tim Krul (G), Danny Simpson, Steven Taylor, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Davide Santon; James Perch, Yohan Cabaye (C), Sylvain Marveaux, Moussa Sissoko, Jonas Gutierrez, Papiss Cisse.

Subs: Rob Elliot, Mike Williamson, Vurnon Anita, Dan Gosling, Gabriel Obertan, Shola Ameobi, Adam Campbell.


NUFCBlog Author: workyticket workyticket has written 1091 articles on this blog.

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68 Responses

  1. It doesn’t look like Chelsea are taking this competition seriously – they are starting Torres. With the favourites out we might stand a chance if by some miracle we beat Benfica.

  2. GS says:
    April 4, 2013 at 7:20 pm

    “It doesn’t look like Chelsea are taking this competition seriously – they are starting Torres.”

    Well he can’t play Ba because he played Europa League with us, GS.

  3. They have Moses, Benayoun and old man Lampard starting as well :) Seriously, they have rung the changes and the stating 11 is not their strongest.

    Our starting 11 is as good as we have so if we are going down we are going down fighting.

  4. If we are down 3-0 at half time, I would take Cabaye, Santon, Cisse, Sissoko and Taylor off. Would we get fined for deliberately playing with 8 men and Obertan?

  5. Benfica team up now. Jesus is gannin’ with a 4-3-3 according to the NUFC main site.

    One of my favourite players of the past few years, Pablo Aimar, is on the bench polishing his zimmer frame. I hope to see him at some stage even if he is 33 or 34 now.

  6. They’re even doing Sunderland fascist jokes on Radio 4 now. Despite my immense distaste for fascism, this is going to be a gift that keeps on giving for we Geordies! :-)

  7. Worky: those Daily Mail funeral pictures are the final nail in HIS coffin. As I have said, we have to sing “Paolo, Paolo give us a wave” at SJP.

  8. GS says:
    April 4, 2013 at 7:50 pm

    “Thanks for the links, it is on tape delay here after Chelsea.

    We’ve got ’em all live, Spurs and us on ITV and Chelsea on ESPN. Makes a change when the UK coverage is actually better than overseas!

  9. workyticket says:
    April 4, 2013 at 8:04 pm

    “Has anyone out there had any “500 – Internal Server Error pages on here?

    About 5 minutes ago, Worky. Lasted about a couple of minutes as I tried several times to get the page up.


  11. tunyc says:
    April 4, 2013 at 8:44 pm

    “But the banter’s pretty dull, worky…”

    Chuck and Darth have kicked off again in the other room by the look of things though. :roll:

  12. perchinio needs to come off, he has played well so far but the pace of the benfica midfield means he is likely to get another booking and ten against these would not be good.HWTL.

  13. Agreed, sammy. Looking at that lineup and bench I assumed Anita would come on at some point for Perch, the appointed midfield destroyer today.

  14. DarthBroon says:
    April 4, 2013 at 9:05 pm

    “Take a look at his comments, Worky, and tell me he wasn’t spoiling for it – as usual.”

    Just ignore the little worms he dangles off the end of his then Darth. ;-)

    Oooh ye frigga!

  15. uh-oh…Lawro’s called out Santon’s defending on BBC’s live text updates of the game. How surprising. Shocking, in fact!

  16. tunyc says:
    April 4, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    “Shocking, in fact!”

    That’s Hansen’s catchphrase. “Veery poooooor, shocking in fact!”

  17. So much of a catchphrase that we know about it even over here, worky.

    It’s still better formed, grammatically, than our guys’ catch phrases such as “BAM!” and “OH, BABY”…

  18. I did write “here comes trouble” when Lima came on.

    Just call me football’s answer to Nostradamus and Old Mother Shipton. :-(

  19. So we now officially have nothing positive to hope for from this season, just survival.

    I have no idea why we would continue with Pardew, in footballing terms.

  20. If Alan Pardew was on Bullseye, he’d always say “I’ve had a lovely day, Jim, I’ll stick with what I’ve got.”

    He’d never go for the speedboat or the Mini Metro.

  21. A little positivity – if we can pull one back, a 3-2 loss away is hardly catastrophic.

  22. Don’t see it happening, Canada. They’ve been in completely control for a while now and our defenders sound like they’re having a horrible second half. Sounds like we’ll be lucky not to concede again.

  23. Ya, the defenders have been taking some liberties. Shola just showed his brilliant touch as per usual, yellow card for his troubles

  24. Can’t say I’m surprised.

    Sad part is, I dare say we have a better squad than Benfica. But, you know, Pardew…

  25. tunyc says:
    April 4, 2013 at 9:53 pm

    “Sad part is, I dare say we have a better squad than Benfica. But, you know, Pardew…”

    They’re remarkably well matched with us in terms of players now they’ve got rid of their latest batch of top players to clubs like Real Madrid, Man City, Chelsea etc.

  26. And what do we have to look forward to? Survival and the possibility that maybe, just maybe, AP will get the appropriate “reward” for his “efforts”?

    Seriously, other than that-what? It’s pretty hard to refer to supporting this club as entertainment right now.

  27. As w*nk as Padres is tuync I won’t blame him for tonight. Santon is a very average defender who seems immune to any criticism. Awful mistake again. And Steven Taylor let us down when It mattered. Cabaye was crap. I feel sorry for Cisse. Best he’s been all season tonight.

  28. Over to Pardew…

    “We did so much right tonight, can’t fault the players, it’s an uphill chance for us now…”

    What’s an uphill chance?

  29. Worky @61: I think you are picking up on the wrong part of Pardew’s statement.

    “Can’t fault the players”

    Except for that suicidal backpass and stupid/unnecessary handball.

  30. Watching Newcastle is like having a recuring nightmare.I don’t know where a win is coming from.I just don’t want to hear anymore “we owe it to the fans” before the next game.We should be investigated for match fixing!!

  31. he also said we went to take the game to them, if counter attack and long balls is taking the game to them, i would hate to see defensive line up…… oh wait that his plan A if we lose to the mackems i swear i will send him anthrax

  32. Still watching 80th minute, looks like curtains for Europe.

    Gotta say Benfica are a good side, well drilled and for the most part deserved to win, which does’nt surprise me .

    Though three of the goals could have been avoided, a poor handling of the ball by Krul, resulted in pushing it to the feet of the the shooter, he also almost caused a goal by mishandling shortly before.

    Bit of rust possibly, but he more than made up for it by making some good reaction saves.

    As for Santon, who knows, happens !

    But Taylor’s handball was just so obvious, what was he thinking ?

    Cisse had a golden opportunity to get number two and blew it, some pass from Cabaye though.

    Yep for the most part a self inflicted loss, spoils a decent run.

    (Pardew can put it on his resume)

    I just hope we can now get a few wins in the PL and concentrate on survival.

    Must say the best side i saw to-day was Basil, technichally good, with quick one touch passing and tremendous pace, Spurs were lucky to get the home draw.
    We are still a way from being a top six side and need to unload a few.
    And bring in replacements, there’s money to be made for top sides and why settle for mediocrity and less.

    No i’m not getting into anything with your angry young friend “Dark Brown”, and it might behove you not to continue to encourage him as you do.