Members of Benfica have chosen former international star Rui Costa as the club’s new president, to succeed Luis Felipe Vieira, who was arrested in July.
The club said on Saturday that Costa, 49, comfortably won the election for a four-year term, securing 84.48% of the vote, compared to just 12.24% for rival Francisco Benitez, revealing that more than 40,000 of its members participated in the vote, which is a record percentage. .
Costa will take over the presidency of the club in which the son of the capital, Lisbon, started his football career with the first team in 1990, and also ended his football career in 2008, having gone through Fiorentina (1994- 2001) and Milan. (2001-2006) Italians.
The former international, who has defended Portugal’s colors in 94 matches, held the post of vice-president and provisionally resumed the post of president when Vieira stepped down after his arrest and placement under house arrest.
Vieira was arrested after the Portuguese public prosecutor opened an investigation for possible breach of trust, aggravated fraud, forgery, tax evasion and money laundering.
Vieira, 72, led the club for 18 years in record time. Under his leadership, the team won seven Portuguese league titles and recovered from the financial difficulties caused by previous scandals.
Benfica finished third in the Portuguese league last season, so they haven’t won any titles for the second season in a row.