Benfica managed to schedule a Europa league final against Chelsea after managing to overcome Turkish club Fenerbahce 3-1 in the return leg. As a result of the victory, they have progressed to the Europa league final 3-2 on aggregate.
They came into the match after having lost the first leg in Turkey 1-0. The lead could have been easily 2-0 had it not been for the missed a penalty from Fenerbahce. It ultimately proved to be the difference between the two teams, as striker Oscar Cardozo scored a brace to set the Portuguese club on the road to the final.
Nicolas Gaitan opened the scoring for the Portuguese club after just 9 min on the clock. This put the two clubs level on aggregate, but former Liverpool striker Dirk Kuyt restored their lead in the aggregate with a penalty in the 23rd minute. Since the penalty, though, it was a show from Cardozo, as the striker netted on either side of half to give Benfica a 3-2 win in the tie. His 35th minute goal helped Benfica equalise on aggregate, but they would have been knocked out of the competition on away goals. His second goal in the 66th minute helped them progress to the final where they will meet Chelsea. The game has already been immortalised in a football canvas.
“We knew after Istanbul that we were a better team than them overall. They didn’t create many problems for us. This is historic given the last time Benfica got to a European final and we get there with all justice. Our dynamic was stronger, pace higher and we managed to keep it throughout the match because we kept the ball. They scored from a penalty but never really created a lot of problems,” said Benfica manager Jorge Jesus after the match. He also said that his team will not be overawed by Chelsea.