Benfica's coach is increasingly contested, even within the club's structure
Benfica tied 1-1 with Ajax for the Champions League on Wednesday and their presence on the league is now at risk. Benfica has gone for four consecutive games without victories and the problems around the coach, Rui Vitória, worsen. At the moment, even the internal situation is complicated. It is true that the leader Luís Filipe Vieira continues to support the coach, but he is the only one doing so. According to information gathered by Plataforma, the strong core of Benfica's administration is already thinking of other options in case things do not change soon enough.
It is not only the bad results that give doubts to Benfica about Rui Vitória. But also the lack of quality of play, the rare opportunities that he has given players that were important last season, like the Serbian Zivkovic, to the reinforcements, only Odysseias has been permanent bet of the Portuguese coach, and finally, the speech of Rui Vitória, with his constant 'complaints' about the team's lack of luck.
Benfica's management never hid that a good performance of the eagles in the Champions League was determinant for the financial success of the club, but the truth is that at the end of four games Rui Vitória's team only has a victory and is with one foot outside of the last 16, since they now rely on others in the last two games to qualify. Domingos Soares Oliveira, responsible for finances, was one of those who made a point of stressing the need for the entry of millions from the millionaire league. For that reason, the current panorama displeases practically the whole structure.
At the moment, Luís Filipe Vieira is the one who holds onto Rui Vitória. Obviously Benfica's coach is in charge, but the truth is that the president has also made the technician see that things have to change. And he did it after the defeat for the championship with Moreirense. The coach, for now, still has some room for maneuver, but not much and in the next games things will have to change.
Rui Vitória, according to sources close to the coach, is also aware that much has to change. Although he has the team on his side, the coach is able to see it does not understand his ideas. And, Plataforma knows, even though Rui Vitória has recently said that he is not a "quitter," that, if things do not change, he admits to make his place available, because as always "the needs of Benfica are always in the first place."
The next game with Tondela, counting for the championship, this weekend, can thus be decisive. A new disaster will put even more pressure on Luís Filipe Vieira, and a victory will not put the coach 'out of danger'.