Coach suggests 'amazing' Benfica player would walk into Liverpool's starting line-up
Photo by Hugo Amaral/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Coach suggests 'amazing' Benfica player would walk into Liverpool's starting line-up

Benfica midfielder Florentino Luis is more than good enough to play for Liverpool right now.

That’s the view of Luis’ former coach at Benfica Joao Tralhao. Speaking to Goal, Tralhao claimed that the 23-year-old midfielder could slot into any one of Europe’s top teams.

“He is the kind of player every coach would like to have in their squad, he’s an amazing boy,” said the coach. “A hard worker, calm, professional, always prepared to listen and he is a proper team player. He doesn’t think only of himself.

“Technically speaking, it’s not easy to find a midfielder with the defensive qualities he has. I used to joke with him and say that he saw the game two seconds before everyone else. It’s amazing the amount of interceptions he makes, the way he can be in the right position all the time. He is always in the right space to regain the ball and he has improved so much in terms of duels, using his body, protecting the ball in contact and so on.

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“He has the talent and quality to play in elite teams. Remember when Real Madrid had the Galacticos? They needed someone to balance the team, and [Claude] Makelele was so important. More recently, Casemiro did that job, allowing [Cristiano] Ronaldo, [Luka] Modric and [Karim] Benzema to attack. Florentino has those capabilities. He’s having an amazing season under Roger Schmidt.

“He can play anywhere, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Liverpool, anywhere. He would have no problem adapting.”

Florentino emerges as Liverpool option

Interestingly, Liverpool are linked with a move for Luis in the very same report from Goal. It’s claimed that the Reds scouts have ‘made checks’ on the Benfica man this season.

If that’s the case, then they’ll surely have been impressed with what they’ve seen. Enzo Fernandez may have been the more eye-catching of Roger Schmidt’s midfielders this year, but Luis is the man who does the dirty work.

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He’s a key part of a side who have been going great-guns all season. Now that Fernandez has been picked off, the onus on Florentino is even greater than it previously was. Thankfully for them, he looks well up to the task.

In truth, he’s looked up to it for some time. That’s why it was a surprise to see him shipped off on consecutive loans to first Monaco and then Getafe. Having failed to really make much of an impact in either spell, Florentino returned to Benfica with a question mark hanging over him this season.

Schmidt has gotten the best out of him, though. The Portugal U21 star now looks capable of reaching the top-level heights expected of him for so long.

If he can keep his form up throughout the rest of the season, a big move could be in the offing. Liverpool are in need of a long-term replacement for Fabinho. They’ve had success shopping in Portugal before. Perhaps this one has legs.

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