Though he currently plays for Marseille in France, Arsenal defender Nuno Tavares had a couple of personal connections to Thursday night’s match between the Gunners and Sporting CP, both through his parent club and his former club Benfica.
Benfica are local rivals of Sporting, and Tavares likely felt that rivalry more keenly than most, having represented both clubs at youth level.
Following a couple of years in the Benfica first team, Tavares moved on from Portugal to join Arsenal, but he hasn’t forgotten those old animosities.
As Arsenal played out a 2-2 away draw with Sporting on Thursday, the fans in the stands baited their opposition counterparts, singing: “Just like Benfica, we’re top of the league!”
After the game, Tavares retweeted one of the video clips of the chant.
“Just like Benfica, we’re top of the league” – adeptos do Arsenal em Alvalade 🎵 pic.twitter.com/GkCl80vkbA
— B24 (@B24PT) March 9, 2023
Unsurprisingly, the Sporting CP fans in the replies weren’t too happy about the tweet. It’s certainly added a bit of extra spice to the upcoming second leg at the Emirates Stadium next Thursday.
Tavares will be watching on again and hoping his parent club finish the job to progress to the Europa League quarter-finals.