Benfica confirm departure of footballer Lima

Lisbon, July 29 (IANS) Brazilian striker Rodrigo Lima has left Portuguese football club Benfica to sign with Al-Ahli Dubai for seven million euros.

The 32-year-old joined the Primeira Liga in 2009 when he moved from Brazil’s Avai to Belenenses, where he scored 12 goals in 32 games during his first season. And after winning the eye of Sporting Braga, he joined that Portuguese club in 2010, scoring 40 goals in 94 games in two seasons, reports Efe.

Benfica paid five million euros to enlist the services of the Brazilian for three seasons, during which he scored 70 goals in 144 games.

Lima on Tuesday admitted that his transfer to Al-Ahli Dubai was in part due to the substantial offer made by the Emirati club. The Brazilian noted that the price tag was especially remarkable since he is 32 and so a short ways away from the end of his career.

The striker noted that Dubai is an agreeable place to live in and he will have the opportunity to broaden his horizons outside of European league football.

Lima spoke of the swiftness of the deal as Al-Ahli Dubai had announced the transfer on Friday on social networks before the deal had been totally finalised. The player thanked Benfica president Luis Filipe Vieira for understanding and facilitating his move.

At the same time, Lima, who will sign a two-year contract with an option for a third, expressed his “sadness” in leaving Benfica after the many “great moments” he experienced with the team and thanked all the fans of the club.


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