Vitória attributes lethargic performance to "abnormal circumstances"

Rui Vitória

There were mixed emotions for Benfica on Tuesday night, as they slipped to a 2-1 defeat to Napoli at the Estádio da Luz, but still qualified for the knockout stages of the Champions League. The Eagles knew that they would progress regardless of defeat if Besiktas failed to overcome Dynamo Kyiv in Ukraine. Dynamo raced into a 4-0 half-time lead, and the news clearly filtered through to the players, leading to a limp and lifeless second half display in Lisbon. Callejón and Mertens got the goals for the Italians, before Raúl snatched a late consolation.




Vitória and Semedo preview crunch Champions League encounter

Benfica do battle with Italian giants Napoli at the Estádio da Luz tonight, with their Champions League fate hanging in the balance. If Beşiktaş lose or draw with Dynamo Kyiv in Ukraine this evening, the Eagles are guaranteed to progress to the last 16. If Beşiktaş triumph, however, then Benfica must win to remain in the competition.




Squad List: Benfica x Napoli

There are no surprises in Rui Vitória's squad to face Napoli on Matchday 6 of the Champions League group stage. Benfica are still without Álex Grimaldo (abdomen), Eliseu (thigh), André Horta (thigh) and Jonas (foot). Danilo and Andrija Živković are both ineligible.

Tuesday's game kicks off at 19:45 at the Estádio da Luz, and will be officiated by Spanish referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz.

Goalkeepers: Ederson and Júlio César

Defenders: Lisandro, Luisão, Lindelöf, Jardel, André Almeida and Nélson Semedo

Midfielders: Fejsa, Samaris, Carrillo, Salvio, Pizzi, Cervi, Rafa Silva and Celis

Forwards: Raúl, Mitroglou and Gonçalo Guedes




Opinion: News and views from the Napoli camp

Benfica host Napoli at the Estádio da Luz on Tuesday night, conscious that they could still finish first, second or third in Champions League Group B. Ahead of the crunch match, Patrick Kendrick spoke to Diego De Luca of Neapolitan radio station Radio Kiss Kiss, to get an insight into Napoli’s preparations.




Vitória and Semedo remain confident of qualification

Benfica were minutes away from achieving qualification to the knockout stages of the Champions League on Wednesday night. After an impressive first half display in which the Eagles scored three goals - much to the dismay of the avid Besiktas fans in the stands - the Turkish side managed to level the scores in the second half with a late goal from Porto loanee Vincent Aboubakar. Benfica's fate will now be decided in a fortnight's time, in the very last round of the group stage.




Match Report: Beşiktaş 3 - 3 Benfica

On Wednesday 23rd November, Benfica travelled to Istanbul to face Besiktas on Matchday 5 of the the UEFA Champions League group stage. Ahead of the main event, Benfica defeated Besiktas 3-0 in the UEFA Youth League, a score which at one point seemed achievable for the first team.




Vitória: "We are aware of what is at stake"

Vitória and Luisão

The Eagles of Benfica take on the Black Eagles of Besiktas at the Vodafone Arena this week, and the stakes could barely be higher. A win would guarantee Benfica's progression to the last 16 of the Champions League, while a defeat would make a third-placed finish a very real possibility. As usual, failure is not on the agenda for Rui Vitória.




Opinion: News and views from the Beşiktaş camp

Benfica take on Beşiktaş in Istanbul this Wednesday, in a game of monumental significance. A win would guarantee a place in the knockout stages of the Champions League, while a draw or a defeat would leave things very much in the balance. Ahead of Matchday 5, we sought the views of Kaan Bayazit, Editor of Besiktas International. You can also read his detailed appraisal of the Beşiktaş squad here.




Squad List: Beşiktaş x Benfica

Benfica have been handed a big injury boost ahead of their crunch Champions League game with Beşiktaş this week. Ljubomir Fejsa and Jardel have both been declared fit to travel.

The Eagles are now at full strength with the exception of Álex Grimaldo (abdomen), André Horta (thigh) and Jonas (foot). Danilo and Andrija Živković are ineligible for the Champions League group stage.

Wednesday’s match kicks off at 17:45 (UK/Portuguese time) at the Vodafone Arena in Istanbul, and will be officiated by Slovenian referee Damir Skomina.

Goalkeepers: Ederson, Júlio César and Paulo Lopes

Defenders: Lisandro, Luisão, Lindelöf, Eliseu, Jardel, André Almeida and Nélson Semedo

Midfielders: Fejsa, Samaris, Carrillo, Salvio, Pizzi, Cervi, Rafa and Celis

Forwards: Raúl, Mitroglou and Gonçalo Guedes




Benfica stars reflect on Dynamo duel

Benfica claimed a priceless three points against Dynamo Kyiv at the Estádio da Luz on Tuesday night. The Eagles are now level on points with group leaders Napoli, with just two games left to play. Pizzi, Salvio and Ederson were asked for their thoughts immediately after the game.




Pages