By Our Correspondent | Opening Doorz Editorial | May 05, 2017
The ‘Reds’, led by coach Rui Vitoria, are getting in step with Hublot time, who have become the Official Timekeeper of the most successful Portuguese club, winner of 77 trophies.
Over its 113 years, the Club has won 35 Portuguese league titles, 25 Portuguese Cups, 7 League Cups, 6 Super Cups and 2 Champions League titles. Benfica is the only club to have won all of the domestic competitions in 2013/14. As well as being the European club with the most supporters, it’s also the most popular Portuguese club, holding the world record for the most members, at more than six million.
Holder of the Portuguese League Cup and League title, the Club has finished each season since 2010 as winner or runner-up in the Liga NOS, the Portuguese top flight. Founded in 1904, by a group of football lovers and former pupils, the small club from Lisbon has come a long way. This Club of legends and traditions, nicknamed ‘O Glorioso’ in homage to its success and prizes, now sees its Águia Vitória eagle, which soars over the ‘Stadium of Light’ before each home match, come to rest on the Classic Fusion Chronograph ‘Sport Lisboa e Benfica’.
“If I had to take someone who didn’t like football to a match, it’d be to the Estádio da Luz, one of those magic places where passion for football is born and nurtured. Benfica is a legendary club that made football history by founding the national league in 1934 and has never left the top division. The ritual of the flight of the Águia Vitória eagle before each home match is a moment that everyone should experience at least once in their lifetime. It’s a beautiful philosophy that, unsurprisingly, is at the root of the ‘Encarnados’. They love football and know how to convey their passion.”
Legend has it that if the eagle flies around the ground twice before landing on the Club’s shield, Benfica will win the match. On benfiquistas’ wrists, at the heart of the ‘Cathedral’ and in all benfiquista homes around the world—SL Benfica has supporters’ clubs and in many different countries—victories are measured in Hublot time.
In honour of a thousand-year-old art which has become a symbol of Portugal, the artist Diogo Machado (also known as Add Fuel) has produced his own take on the famous azulejos—the patterned earthenware tiles used to decorate buildings, all throughout the country. In a contemporary rendering that reveals a sense of humour and an impressive eye for detail, the Portuguese artist has created the story of the Hublot-Benfica partnership directly onto the ceramic.
The work incorporates the representation of an eagle, motifs inspired by watch mechanisms, the club’s own red colour and the impression of torn and overlaid images that characterise his works. Presented by the artist to mark the announcement of the partnership, the azulejo will preside over the Club’s destiny from the heart of the Hublot lounge.
In a black ceramic case, the chronograph counter, minute track and strap in alligator leather sewn onto natural rubber are punctuated by the eye-catching colour scheme sported by the ‘Reds’. Beating to the rhythm of 28,800 vibrations per hour, its HUB1143 self-winding mechanical movement has a 42-hour power reserve, enough to allow supporters to watch almost 28 matches in a row!
With 113 pieces produced, the Classic Fusion Chronograph ‘Sport Lisboa e Benfica’ is a sure-fire winner. Alongside Chelsea, Juventus, Bayern Munich and Ajax Amsterdam, SL Benfica becomes the fifth European club to join Hublot’s squad.
“We like to partner with global references. Like Benfica, Hublot is a leader in its industry
with a strong presence all over the world. And above all, Hublot combines tradition with innovation, something that is very important to us,” says Luis Filipe Vieira, President of SL Benfica Football Club.
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