Photo: Wikipedia Commons/Steve Gardner

Photo: Wikipedia Commons/Steve Gardner

Benfica 2 VS 2 Porto

(0-1) Mangala 8′
(1-1) Matić 10′
(1-2) Martínez 15′
(2-2) Gaitán 17′

Benfica XI: Artur, Maxi, Garay, Jardel, Melgarejo, Matic, Perez (Martins 58′), Gaitán (John 88′), Salvio, Lima (Aimar 69′), Cardozo

Porto X1: Helton, Danillo, Mangala, Otamendi, Alex Sandro, Fernando, Moutinho, Lucho (Castro 90+2′), Defour (Izmaylov 75′), Jackson, Varela (Abdoulaye 88′)

Benfica hosted Portuguese champions Porto in the first Clássico between the two clubs this season and the game did not disappoint.

French defender Eliaquim Mangala began the scoring for Porto in the 8th minute off a Joao Moutinho free kick. The capital club quickly responded with a brilliant strike from Serbian Nemanja Matić to even the score at the ten minute mark.

In the 15th minute, Benfica goalkeeper Artur woefully mishandled a pass from his own defender resulting in an easy goal for Jackson Martinez.

But two minutes later, Nicolas Gaitán again equalized for Benfica. The score was even at 2-2 at the 17 minute mark of the game. From then on, both teams tightened up defensively with good chances being hard to come by.

In the second half, Benfica had the best two chances. Oscar Cardozo was put in alone on goal against Helton but saw his shot deflected out of play by the Brazilian goalkeeper.

Later, substitute Pablo Aimar missed a diving header from a few yards away through a nice feed by Matić.

That seemed to seal the draw for both teams in a scintillating contest in the Portuguese capital on Sunday. Matić and Moutinho were the Men of the Match for their respective teams.

Porto manager Vitor Pereira questioned the performance of referee João Ferreira after the match.

“I have to disagree with three offsides that were wrongly called against us, that could have left us alone on goal. Two players should have been sent off, one right in front of me,” Pereira said.

“Maxi Pereira, right in front of me, should have been expelled and Matic should have been given a second yellow with 15 minutes left!,” Pereira said noticeably agitated.

Benfica manager Jorge Jesus dismissed Pereira’s claims and added that Cardozo’s miss in the second half was key to the match.

Benfica currently lead the Liga with 36 points after having played 14 matches. Porto remain three points behind but have played one less game.

Elsewhere in Portugal on Sunday, Jesualdo Ferreira’s Sporting side beat Olhanense 2-0 with goals from Labyad and Adrien Silva.

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