Primeira Liga, Saturday, 27.05.2023

It’s not only in the 1st Bundesliga that the showdown for the championship is on the agenda this weekend. In Portugal, too, the new champion will finally be crowned on the final matchday!

And just like in Germany, the leader goes into its last home game with a two-point lead and is the big favourite against a relegated team. But in my Benfica Lisbon Santa Clara tip, I now reveal why the +3 handicap on the visitors makes sense to me!

Just a year ago, FC Porto were delighted to have won the double, but now they’ll probably have to give way to Benfica Lisbon! The Eagles are two points ahead and have a much better goal difference.

So it’s all in their own hands when the Stars take on bottom side Santa Clara at home on Sunday. They would have loved to have celebrated last weekend in the derby against Sporting.

Not only did it come to nothing, Benfica just managed to stave off defeat at the last second! In the end, a 2:2 was on the scoreboard, which definitely showed how much the leaders are longing for the summer break.

So 14 wins from the last 17 games are not supposed to be all that good? I don’t want to put it that way, of course, but it has become clear in recent weeks that even Benfica’s tank is empty at some point.

Three of their past five victories have come by a narrow 1-0 margin, and they also suffered defeats against Porto (1:2) and Chaves (0:1) in April. In their own stadium, too, the fans have recently been treated to rather meagre fare.

1:0 against Braga and Estoril Praia, one is actually used to something different from the high-ranking offensive. Two of the last ten home victories were by more than two goals.

They may be luxury problems, because on Sunday even a slim 1:0 would do. With 14 wins, one draw and one defeat, the record at the Estadio da Luz is excellent, and only twelve goals have been conceded.

Since Santa Clara has been back in the Primeira Liga (or rather played, since relegation has already been sealed), the Eagles have hardly had any problems against these opponents, not even in the 3-0 win in the first leg.

But: 2:1, 2:1, and 3:4? The most recent three results at home revealed some slight difficulties! Still, they are not an option for our bettors this weekend, odds of 1.07 to 27.0 really couldn’t be clearer.

The visitors have long since resigned themselves to their fate, with only 22 points they no longer have a chance of relegation or even staying in the league. Five wins, nobody has won less often.

Two of the five wins came in the last three games, but unfortunately the comeback came too late. It was very nice for the fans to be able to cheer another three home games in a row for points, seven in total.

However, things have been even worse away from home in recent weeks. 3:5, 0:3, 1:2, and 0:3, these defeats revealed that the defence is not mature enough for another season in Portugal’s top division.

Until the end of February, they had never conceded more than two goals away from home, but now they are showing more and more shakiness. Just as weak, of course, is the fact that their own goal average is only 0.5 per match.

Benfica Lisbon have everything in their own hands on Sunday, a win against Santa Clara and they can celebrate the championship with the fans! A home game suits the team particularly well, not for nothing have they won 14 of their 16 games here.

As far as the opponents are concerned, I could quickly see in my analysis that this is a deserving relegation team. Especially away from home, the record looks very bad.

But at least only two games have been lost away from home with a deficit of more than two goals. Since Benfica has been very reluctant to score goals in recent home games and almost lost to Sporting recently, I’m going for a slightly closer outcome and so I’m betting:

A 3-0 handicap is enough for Santa Clara to win!