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How Portuguese teams would look if they had not sold their best players.

  • The Primeira Liga has a history of being a breeding ground for some exceptionally skilful footballers, who eventually switch to bigger clubs in bigger ...
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Modified 06 Aug 2014, 00:11 IST

The Primeira Liga has a history of being a breeding ground for some exceptionally skilful footballers, who eventually switch to bigger clubs in bigger leagues. Improved wages is not the only reason for these playersturning their back on theirclubs, as players ambition and the clubs needing money are also important factors.The league in Portugal is dominated by the Big Three---Benfica, Porto and Sporting Lisbon---all other professional clubs in Portugal have won only 2 league titles between them.Players seeking a challenge, or wanting to move to the next level, understandably move to greenerpastures when the opportunity arises. As an astounding amount of money enters these clubscoffers as transfer income, one wonders where the money gets invested.Here is a look at what the team composition of the Big Three in Portugal might have been now ifthey had the ability to retain their top players over the last decade or so.

#1 SL Benfica

Benfica have an illustrious history of featuring in eight major European finals, the last of which was in 1990.

Jan Oblak (£12.6m to Atletico Madrid), Courtouis’s replacement is the custodian between the posts. World Cup stars Garay (£12 million to Zenit St Petersburg) and David Luiz (£20 million to Chelsea) provide cover, allowing current right back Maxi Perreira and Fabio Coentrao (£24 million to Real Madrid) to run down the wings. 

The midfield is a collection of hard-working individuals who will not give the opposition any respite, and are also capable of dropping back when required. Nemanja Matic (£18 million to Chelsea) plays a holding role while Ramires (£18.3 million to Chelsea), Enzo Perez (who is supposed to complete a move to Valencia later this week), and Angel di Maria (£21 milllion to Real Madrid) provide the horsepower of the team.

Nico Gaitan (who is likely to move to Monaco soon) plays as a second striker behind another current teammate in the Brazilian Lima who scored 21 goals last season.

Bench: Lazar Markovic(£20 million to Liverpool), Javi Garcia(£16 million to Manchester City), Axel Witsel(£32.5 million to Zenit St.Petersburg), Rodrigo (on loan to Valencia)

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Published 05 Aug 2014, 13:29 IST
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