Two teams with great history in Europe's premier competition go head-to-head in what should pose the sternest test of the group for last season's runners-up
Pereira, Luisao, Garay, Emerson
Witsel, Gaitan, Nolito
Jones, Smalling, Ferdinand, Fabio
Nani, Carrick, Anderson, Young
Sir Alex Ferguson will surely keep faith in most of the team that dished out such a hammering to Bolton at the weekend, with the only changes being enforced. Tom Cleverley (ligaments) is definitely out and defenders Jonny Evans (hip) and Patrice Evra (knee) are both doubts. Chris Smalling should return to the Red Devils' defence, with either he or Phil Jones filling in again at right-back, where both have done well out of position so far this season.
||DID YOU KNOW?|
- Benfica have made an unbeaten start to their season, winning their last three league games after drawing their first, and overcoming Trabzonspor and FC Twente on their way to the group stage.
- United are not only unbeaten but have won every game they have played of the campaign so far.
- Including the Community Shield victory over rivals Manchester City, Manchester United have scored an incredible 21 goals in their five matches this season.
- This season is the 50th anniversary of Benfica’s European Cup triumph in 1961-62. That victory, inspired by Portugal legend Eusebio, was their second in as many years. They missed out on an unprecedented hat-trick by losing in the 1963 final and have not won Europe’s top prize since.
- Striker Nolito, who moved to the Estadio de Luz from United’s nemesis Barcelona this summer, has scored five goals in his first five games for his new club, equalling a record held by Eusebio.
- But striker Wayne Rooney has hit an even more impressive vein of goalscoring form, scoring eight in five so far.