Benfica-Anderlecht Preview: New-look Aguias host Belgian champions
The Portuguese club suffered defeat in the final of the Europa League last term and will now hope to be competitive alongside Europe's finest in the Champions League
Benfica kick off their Champions League campaign by hosting Anderlecht at Estadio da Luz on Tuesday, with the stadium set to host the final of the competition in May.
The Portuguese side lost the domestic title to Porto in the final two matches of last season as well as losing the Europa League final to Chelsea and have responded by bringing in a host of new players.
|Bet:||Returns:||AA Gent £35.00||Draw £33.00||Anderlecht £21.00|
Filip Djuricic from Heerenveen, Partizan Belgrade's highly-rated Serbian teenager Lazar Markovic and Guilherme Siqueira, who joined on loan from Spanish side Granada, have all arrived and bolstered the Benfica ranks.
Jorge Jesus' side have not enjoyed the best start to the campaign though, after suffering defeat away to Maritimo, thus extending their run without a win on the opening day of the campaign to nine years.
Benfica's opponents on Tuesday, Anderlecht, have played 180 matches in Europe's premier club competition but their more recent history leaves a lot to be desired, with last season’s participation representing their first appearance in the group stage since the 2006-07 season.
The Belgian side could not muster a great deal upon their return as they scored just four goals, the second-lowest tally in the competition behind Dinamo Zagreb. Anderlecht did, however, manage their first Champions League home win in nine years when defeating Zenit St Petersburg 1-0.
Coach John van den Brom will have been disappointed to lose key men Dieumerci Mbokani and Lucas Biglia to Dynamo Kiev and Lazio respectively, over the close-season, but they made several astute signings too.
Nineteen-year-old Ghana winger Frank Acheampong arrived from Buriram United, while a real coup came in the acquisition of Spain Under-20 wideman Fede Vico from Cordoba.
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Top 3 Predictions
Benfica 2-1 Anderlecht
- 24.2 %
Benfica 2-0 Anderlecht
- 14.99 %
Benfica 3-1 Anderlecht
- 13.7 %
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Nov 27, 2013||Anderlecht 2 - Benfica 3|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Sep 17, 2013||Benfica 2 - Anderlecht 0|
|Dec 10, 2013||Benfica 2 - Paris Saint-Germain 1||UCL|
|Dec 6, 2013||Benfica 2 - FC Arouca 2||POR1|
|Dec 1, 2013||Rio Ave 1 - Benfica 3||POR1|
|Nov 27, 2013||Anderlecht 2 - Benfica 3||UCL|
|Nov 23, 2013||Benfica 1 - Sporting Braga 0||POR1|
|Returns:||Benfica £15.00||Sign up with William Hill for a free bet up to £25|
|Returns:||Draw £45.00||Sign up with bet365 for a free bet up to £200|
|Returns:||Anderlecht £85.00||Sign up with bet365 for a free bet up to £200|
|35||Enzo Nicolás Pérez||Midfielder|
|33||Jardel Nivaldo Vieira||Defender|
|20||Demy de Zeeuw||Midfielder|