Benfica have drawn level on points with Porto at the top of Liga Sagres in Portugal after a 3-0 victory over third-placed Pacos de Ferreira.
Enzo Perez gave Benfica the lead in just the seventh minute and from there the home side did not look back with Oscar Cardozo and Eduardo Salvio adding goals to wrap up a fairly comfortable win at the Estadio da Luz.
The victory takes Benfica to 52 points and only behind Porto due to goal difference (+39 compared to +36).
Sunday’s match loomed as an opportunity for Pacos de Ferreira, a small club from the north of Portugal, to prove they could match it with the likes of Benfica and Porto.
Having defeated Sporting Braga two weeks ago to take third spot, Pacos were looking for their first win over Benfica since 2006, while they had not defeated the Lisbon-based club at home in over 10 years.
But the game started disastrously for Pacos, as Salvio had enough time with his back to goal to tee-up Perez, who sprinted into the penalty area to score after just six minutes.
Benfica dominated the first half with Cardozo hitting the woodwork with a delicate chip, while Pacos’ best goal-scoring opportunity before the break was Andre Leao’s deflected strike that almost snuck in at the near post.
Just two minutes into the second half, Benfica doubled their lead when Luisao’s header from a corner struck the post and Cardozo tapped the rebound home.
Benfica continued to pepper Cassio in Pacos’ goal but had to wait until the 83rd minute to make it 3-0 when Salvio scored from a goal-mouth scramble.
In other results in Liga Sagres, Nacional thumped Olhanense 3-1, while Moreirense and Gil Vicente completed a 0-0 draw.