Estádio Da Luz, Lisboa, Portugal
90’+2′ Nathan Júnior
Petit’s return to the Estádio Da Luz was an embarrassing one as his current Tondela side were thrashed by his former side Benfica, who moved back to the top of the league thanks to a comfortable 4-1 victory.
A goal from Jardel, a brace from his compatriot Jonas and a late strike from Kostas Mitroglou ensured Benfica a fourth consecutive victory in all competitions, despite a late consolation goal from Nathan Júnior.
The hosts began the game in the ascendancy as expected and thought they were ahead within the first minute. Mitroglou received Anderson Talisca’s volleyed-pass to slot home, however, the linesman had his flag up. The Greek international was actually level.
Ten minutes later, the hosts did go ahead. A Nicolás Gaitán delivery from a corner was met by Jardel who headed powerfully beyond Cláudio Ramos. The keeper couldn’t keep the centre-back’s effort out.
The hosts didn’t really have many chances in the first half but when they did, they made them count. Eliseu and Talisca were involved in a nice exchange before Gaitán’s low cross found Jonas, whose first-time strike beat Ramos at his near post to extend the Eagles’ lead.
After the break, the visitors started to get a feel for the ball. Nathan Júnior created a yard of space before firing just over from range a minute into the restart. Three minutes later, the visitors went close again. Karl Júnior did well to get free down the left flank before finding Dolly Menga in space, but his effort was poor and went harmlessly wide.
In the 54th minute the hosts went close to increasing the lead. Substitute Eduardo Salvio found Mitroglou, whose attempted back-heel was blocked into the path of the grateful Ramos.
Twelve minutes later the hosts went close again. Substitute Gonçalo Guedes cut inside before firing an effort narrowly wide of the far post via a deflection. From the resulting corner the Eagles almost made it three. The ball was nodded down into the path of Mitroglou who forced Ramos into a fine save from a tight-angle, before Ramos made another good save from the on-loan Fulham striker on the rebound.
Two minutes later the Eagles did make it three. An Eliseu throw-in was flicked into the path of Jonas, who headed the ball past Ramos who got a hand to it. The goal was the Brazilian’s 30th of the season, the second-highest goal tally in Europe; only bettered by Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Brazilian nearly completed his hat-trick a minute later. A Pizzi delivery was flicked on by Jardel into Jonas’ path, but he just couldn’t divert the ball goalwards on the slide.
The hosts were hungry for more goals and went close to finding another in the 83rd minute when Guedes bent an effort just wide of the far post after good initial work from substitute Andreas Samaris.
Two minutes later, the visitors nearly pulled a goal back. Substitute Erik Moreno surged forward before firing an effort just wide of the post.
A couple of minute later the hosts made it four. Mitroglou latched onto a long-ball forward before slotting home. The Greek forward took his top off to celebrate and received a yellow card for his eccentric nature. The booking meant that the forward would miss Benfica’s next game against Boavista alongside Jardel, who also received a yellow card earlier in the game.
The visitors did manage to get a consolation deep into injury. Substitute Luís Alberto found Nathan Júnior who did well to stay onside, before slotting through the legs of Ederson to prevent the young keeper from keeping a clean sheet. It was Tondela’s first goal at the Estádio Da Luz, but it wouldn’t matter.
That was the last action of the match as the referee blew his whistle to bring the match to an end.
The result for the hosts meant that they are now on 64 points, two points clear of their neighbours Sporting. The result for the visitors meant that they remained bottom of the league, still on 13 points.