A late goal in Portugal leaves La Vecchia Signora playing catch-up this evening, with William Hill offering odds of 6/10 (1.60) on them coming out on top in the match odds market.
However, Jorge Jesus’s side are chasing an historic quadruple having already lifted the Portuguese league title and reached both domestic cup competitions, with 4/1 (5.00) odds available on them securing a second consecutive Europa League final appearance with a victory tonight.
March’s 2-2 draw with Tottenham is the only time Os Aguias have failed to win in this competition since last season’s final defeat against Chelsea, and you can get odds of 11/4 (3.75) on them claiming a priceless draw in this one.
Carlos Tevez’s equaliser in Lisbon was celebrated like a winning goal by his team-mates, only for Lima’s late strike to take the wind out of their sails and leave them with a tough task on their hands this evening.
While the away goal means Antonio Conte’s team require only a 1-0 win to set up their eagerly anticipated home final, the visitors demonstrated just this weekend that they are certainly no pushovers.
A red card after just half an hour during Sunday’s cup game against Porto left Jesus’s team a man light in the back yard of one of their fiercest rivals, yet they still managed to hold out for a 0-0 draw before triumphing on penalties.
That performance could represent the perfect dress rehearsal for tonight’s clash, where they will attempt to silence a home crowd likely to feel the tension should things fail to go their team’s way.
Having conceded just nine goals in their last 20 games in all competitions, Benfica are more than capable of making life difficult for their hosts this evening, and should also be confident of finding an away goal of their own after failing to score just twice in their last 32 fixtures.
With all the pressure on Juventus as they look to reach their dream final, it is worth backing the visitors to spoil the party and secure a second successive final appearance, particularly at generous quotes of even money (2.00) with William Hill.
|Benfica to qualify for a 2pt stake at Evens (2.00) with William Hill
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Al Hain-Cole is an experienced tipster and avid follower of European football. He specialises in accumulators and if you would like to read more from Al you can follow him on Twitter here.