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The Argentina international spoke highly of his side's Champions League opponents ahead of their clash in Lisbon and warned that a tough match awaits the Blaugrana in Portugal.

Barcelona's Javier Mascherano is of the opinion that Tito Vilanova's men have a hard task at their hands when they visit Estadio Da Luz on Tuesday to take on Benfica in the UEFA Champions League.

The versatile 28-year-old warned that Barcelona's opponents will be tough to beat at home and insisted his team is not distracted by the Clasico on Saturday.

"I have a lot of respect for Benfica, because I’ve had a first hand experience of what it’s like to suffer here," the Argentine told Barcelona's official website. “I know how difficult it is to come to this stadium and secure a good result.

"Both matches [against Benfica and Real Madrid] are important, but the match against Benfica is more important because we have to face them sooner. We’ll have enough time to focus on the Clasico."

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