The American television station CNN released, this Monday, an interview with Bruno Lage, in which the coach of the Reds spoke about the importance of Caixa Futebol Campus for the present and the future of Benfica and praised "the project and vision" of the President Luís Filipe Vieira.
“All the people who work in the academy make it a very special place to work. We cannot talk about Caixa Futebol Campus without first mentioning the project and vision of our President, 15 years ago, to create the academy, to build a fantastic place that gives us conditions of excellence to evolve: us as coaches,an the young athletes as players. We have the conditions to evolve and make the necessary evolution of our players according to their potential”, highlighted Bruno Lage.
“In modern times, the most important thing a club has to understand is what kind of work it has to do in youth development, in order to have sporting and financial success. Benfica's big success was not to copy anyone, but to devise a way for the sporting success to take place and, in modern times where player transfer happen all the time, be able to have financial return”, he stressed.
Questioned about João Félix, who this summer transferred from Benfica to Atletico de Madrid, Bruno Lage advised the Portuguese international to "just be himself", despite all the expectations built around him.
“I that's what distinguishes him from the others. He doesn't have to compare himself to anyone. It's even sometimes unfair the comparisons that are made between João, who is 19 years old , and one of the best players of all time like Cristiano Ronaldo”, he mentioned.
After validating Benfica's quality domestically, the manager Bruno Lage considered that the conquest of Europe is the way forward.
“Our ambition as to be based on the Club's greatness. In the last ten years, Benfica has been regaining their place in football. In terms of academy football it is clear the evolution and projection that we have had, both nationally and internationally. That's the next step”, claimed Bruno Lage.
Text: Márcia Dores
Pics: SL Benfica