Benfica have now joined the list of those wishing to tell the world what a thoroughly nice guy Bernardo Silva is.

The Manchester City player has been charged by the English FA relating to a tweet sent to teammate Bernardo Silva.

Pep Guardiola, Portugal manager Fernando Santos and AS Monaco’s Leonardo Jardim have been among those to speak out in defence of the footballer.

There seems to be a misunderstanding from a lot of those issuing the defence that it’s Silva as a person being attacked, rather than merely an act from the player being criticised in isolation.

A simple apology at the beginning may well have avoided the whole saga, and it would be no surprise if Manchester City feel they, and their manager, could have handled the situation better.

Nevertheless, Benfica have come out swinging. O Jogo report the Lisbon club have today released the following in their weekly newsletter.

‘Bernardo Silva is a young man who has always been distinguished by his simplicity, character and good training.

‘At Benfica We are so proud of you, Bernardo! Just look at the way he feels and expresses his love for the club he was formed in, and this heartfelt way helps us understand the kind of person we are talking about. Two friends in a tweet turned into racist intentions, and filing a lawsuit for misconduct, demonstrates and is a sign of a disease of the times.’

They’re not helping.