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Gio savours Saviola reunion

Posted on 2 August 2010  - 12:00

Giovani dos Santos is looking forward to locking horns with friend and former team-mate Javier Saviola at Benfica on Tuesday night.

Gio savours Saviola reunion

Giovani dos Santos is looking forward to locking horns with friend and former team-mate Javier Saviola at Benfica on Tuesday night.

The pair were at Barcelona together between 2002-2007 when Saviola moved to Barca's rivals Real Madrid.

Gio, at the Nou Camp as a junior from 2001, joined us in the summer of 2008 and now, two years later, the pair will meet again at the Estadio da Luz as we face Saviola's Benfica in the Eusebio Cup.

The Argentine scored 11 goals in 27 games for the Portuguese champions last season and is in form again - he netted twice as his side beat Aston Villa 4-1 on Sunday.

"I know him very well," said Gio, on target himself in his first friendly of the summer, Thursday's 4-1 loss to Villarreal.

"I played with him at Barcelon and he's a good friend. He's an excellent player as well, very quick, a good finisher. And he's a great person."

Gio is under no illusions as to the test ahead on Tuesday.

The Eagles soared to the Portuguese title again last season with an impressive 76-point haul out of a possible 90.

So strong at home, not surprisingly they won 14 of 15 home games at the Estadio da Luz, drawing the other.

Their title win takes them straight into the group stages of the Champions League - and makes them the ideal opposition ahead of our forthcoming Champions League play-off with the eagerly-anticipated draw this Friday.

"I've played Benfica before in the Champions League for Barcelona," added Gio.

"They are such a big club, a big history and they always play in the Champions League. They are full of top players and this is a top friendly, a very good friendly for us before the Champions League."