Benfica eye Rapid’s Jelavic

Benfica have been revealed as the latest club targeting Rapid Vienna star Nikica Jelavic.Austrian sports newspapers report today (Thurs) that the Lisbon-based side – who currently lead the Portuguese league – sent scouts to put an eye on the 24-year-old Croat in his team’s match against Red Bull Salzburg last Friday. And dozens of scouts from international clubs are expected to be at Vienna’s Gerhard Hanappi Stadium tomorrow night when Rapid clash with Kapfenberg.Jelavic, who found the net 15 times in 32 league matches this season, stressed: “I’m fully focused on Rapid at the moment.”It was reported recently that Croatian champions Dinamo Zagreb and Hamburger SV were interested in signing the striker who joined the Austrian vice champions from Belgian side Zulte Waregem in 2008.Jelavic became an essential part of Peter Pacult’s starting eleven after Austrian national team stars Stefan Maierhofer and Erwin Hoffer left the club last summer. Good performances for Rapid helped Jelavic to a comeback in the Croatian national team last year.Pacult made clear already months ago that he would not be surprised if Jelavic leaves the club.”He is playing at a constantly high level and has scored nine goals in Europe [in the Europa League group stage]. This is something scouts from interested clubs do notice, of course,” the former national team striker said.Sturm Graz midfielder Klaus Salmutter meanwhile agreed with club bosses on a new two-year deal. The 26-year-old’s deal would have expired after the current season. Salmutter left Sturm in 2008 for LASK Linz after six years at the club before returning during the past winter transfer window.The Bundesliga table after 32 rounds:Red Bull Salzburg, 70 pointsRapid Vienna, 64Austria Vienna, 63Sturm Graz, 52Magna Wiener Neustadt, 43Mattersburg, 37LASK Linz, 36SV Ried, 35Kapfenberg, 27Austria Kärnten, 12