2007-08 Benfica Home Shirt Size Small
Era: 2007-08 (Used for the 2007-08 Primeira Liga season)
This article comes to you in nothing short of excellent condition! Ignoring some crumpling to the shirt sponsor, the crest and Adidas embroidery are in fine standing as is the material of the shirt!
Pit to Pit Measurement: 19 inches
Shirt Length: 31.5 inches
Made by Adidas in their ‘ClimaCool’ range of shirts which they introduced in 2007; these shirts were Adidas at their baggiest! Consequently, this shirt would probably be better suited for a size medium, if not, even a size large!
After Adidas’ masterful adaption of their season template for Benfica in 2006-07, they did not disappoint either in 2007-08! Unlike the season earlier where the slashes motif used by Adidas were coloured white, red chosen to decorate the application this time round! A formal polo collar would be reinstated for the first time since the 2004-05 season, and the collar, alongside with the 3 stripes coming down the sleeves would be coloured white. The other salient edition would be the adjacent placement of the Adidas embroidery which now sat in the top right hand side of the body! This would also be the last Benfica shirt to feature the PT shirt sponsorship in what was the legendary – Manuel Rui Costa’s final season as a professional footballer before retiring at the end of the season.
After the incredible thrill-ride that was the 2006-07 Primeira Liga season, it was back to the drawing board for Fernando Santos and his Benfica troops, and they would be without: Beto, Derlei, Giorgos Karagounis, Fabrizio Miccoli, Simao and Manuel Fernandes who all sought new pastures in the summer of 2007. There would be an injection of both youth and experience with the hugely promising: Fabio Coentrao, David Luiz, Angel Di Maria, and Freddy Adu joined by the established: Oscar Cardozo, Cristian Rodríguez, Maxi Pereira and Hans-Jorg Butt.
Incredibly, Santos would be sacked on August 20th 2007 and was replaced by Jose Antonio Camacho. Despite the abrupt change, Benfica would enjoy a fantastic start to the new Portuguese season as they went unbeaten in their opening 11 games, claiming 7 wins, before being beaten 1-0 by FC Porto; ending a 30 match unbeaten streak that stretched back to November 2006!
A follow up defeat to Belenenses would set the stage for a run of just 3 wins sandwiched between 20/12/2007 and 09/03/2008; a run that would not only end Benfica’s title charge, but also the tenure of Jose Antonio Camacho who was replaced by Fernando Chalana following the 2-2 draw at home to Uniao de Leiria.
Results were not much better under the caretaker manager as he accumulated just 3 wins of his own in the 8 league games he oversaw; ultimately, culminating in a disappointing 4th place finish.
Elsewhere, after reaching the Group Stage of the UEFA Champions League; they would have to settle for a place in the UEFA Cup after the winter break as they were pipped by Celtic to the Last 16 for a second season in a row. In between transitioning between Camacho and Chalana, Benfica would bow out of the UEFA Cup in the Round of 16.
A thrilling run to the semi-final of the Taca de Portugal was ended by Sporting CP on 16/04/2008, when they were beaten 5-3 in a sensational game which Benfica actually took a 2-0 lead in, before finding themselves at 3-3 with less than 10 minutes to spare!
This would be the final season for the Portugal and Benfica legend – Manuel Rui Costa; he would play his last game as a professional footballer in the 3-0 win over Vitoria de Setubal on the final day of the season. Another stalwart in the form of – Petit, would also say farewell to the club after a fine 6 year stint with the club.
The notable players that season were:
Nuno Gomes, Óscar Cardozo, Pedro Mantorras, Gonzalo Bergessio, Ángel Di María, Freddy Adu, Cristian Rodríguez, Maxi Pereira, Rui Costa, Nuno Assis, Gilles Binya, Kostas Katsouranis, Armando Petit, Fábio Coentrão, Luisao, Ricardo Rocha, David Luiz, Edcarlos, Leo, Quim
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