Squad List: Astana x Benfica

Benfica have taken twenty players to Kazakhstan to face FC Astana on Champions League Matchday 5. Long-term injury absentees Eduardo Salvio and Nélson Semedo remain out of the picture, and are joined on the sidelines by captain Luisão, who fractured his left arm in the derby defeat to Sporting. Lisandro Lopez is the clear favourite to replace Benfica’s skipper in central defence, as Victor Lindelöf is unavailable with a sprained left ankle. Nico Gaitán is suspended following his late dismissal against Galatasaray, while Ljubomir Fejsa is still recovering from his right foot injury.

Goalkeepers: Júlio César, Ederson and Paulo Lopes.

Defenders: Lisandro, Eliseu, Sílvio and Jardel.

Midfielders: Samaris, Pizzi, Cristante, Talisca, André Almeida, Carcela, João Teixeira, Renato Sanches, Gonçalo Guedes and Nuno Santos.

Forwards: Raúl Jiménez, Jonas and Mitroglou.

Astana x Benfica: Pre-Match Press


Rui Vitória assured that Benfica are fully focused on Wednesday's game against FC Astana. 

"It is not nice to lose, but one of the good things is that our team has successful competitions and we already have a very important game, with great motivation, soon after three or four days. There was a game and we are professionals. It was not what we wanted but we now have a great journey to move to the next stage. The motivation of the Champions League to prevail over the game against Sporting. With adversity teams have won," He began by saying.

Rui Vitória looking to make things right

The Champions League returns to Lisbon as Benfica get ready to face Turkish giants Galatasaray for the 'second-leg' of Group C.

The previous result was unfavourable for Rui Vitória's men as they lost by the minimal margin in Istanbul after Gaitán had put them ahead within minutes of kick-off. Benfica couldn't capitalise and left all 3 points behind.

After this morning's session, the Benfica manager stated he is eager to sum 9 points by the end of tomorrow.

Luisão demands perfect night

The Benfica captain has put last round's defeat in Istanbul behind him, and demands a perfect night tomorrow as the «eagles» look to take command of Group C at the Estádio da Luz.

"Galatasaray is a difficult opponent, like they were in Turkey, and know what they are after. However we have huge ambitions."

"We played an excellent game there with good intensity. That game is now behind us and tomorrow will be completely different. We have to be focused and take our opportunities as we all know there aren't many in the Champions League."

Squad List: SL Benfica x Galatasaray SK

Rui Vitória named his 20-player squad list ahead of tomorrow's important Champions League clash at home against Galatasaray.

Taarabt and Cristante are the most surprising inclusions as both are yet to feature for Benfica in an official competition. B players Lindelöf, João Teixeira and Renato Sanches also made the cut.

Salvio and Nélson Semedo continue their recovery whilst Fejsa and striker Mitroglou are the latest to join the injury list.

Samaris is suspended.

Goalkeepers: Ederson and Júlio César

Defenders: Lisandro, Luisão, Lindelöf, Eliseu, Sílvio and Jardel

Midfielders: André Almeida, Cristante, Gaitán, Pizzi, Taarabt, Talisca, Carcela, João Teixeira,  Gonçalo Guedes and Renato Sanches

Forwards: Raúl Jiménez and Jonas

Highlights: Galatararay 2 - 1 Benfica

Galatasaray x Benfica: Press Conference.


Going into the 3rd round of the Champions League, Rui Vitória assured that the team are looking for another victory and to secure a place in the quarter-finals. If they secure said victory, they will reach a milestone in the competition, a face that he undervalued, saying, "I am not thinking about any record, just thinking about adding another victory in Europe." 

Squad List: Galatasaray x Benfica

There are no surprises in the squad selected by Rui Vitória to face Galatasaray in Istanbul on Wednesday night. After being rested for Friday's Taça de Portugal win over Vianense, there are recalls for Almeida, Samaris, Guedes, Gaitán and Jonas. Goalkeeper Ederson also returns after recovering from his bout of gastroenteritis. Long-term absentees Salvio and Nélson Semedo remain sidelined as they recuperate after surgery, while Nuno Santos is ruled out with tendonitis of the right knee.

Wednesday's game at the Turk Telekom Arena kicks off at 21:45 local time, and will be officiated by Scottish referee William Collum.

Goalkeepers: Ederson, Júlio César and Paulo Lopes.

Defenders: Lisandro Lopez, Jardel, Luisão, Eliseu, André Almeida and Sílvio.

Midfielders: Gaitán, Pizzi, Fejsa, Gonçalo Guedes, Carcela, Talisca, Victor Andrade and Samaris.

Fowards: Jonas, Raúl and Mitroglou.

The Istanbul agenda

Benfica return to the Champions League stage this Wednesday against Turkish giants Galatasaray SK.

The squad will depart Lisbon on 19th October at 16:00 in a chartered flight to Istanbul.

A training session will be held the following morning at 11:00 local time (13:00 in Lisbon/London) in the Turk Telekom Arena where 15 minutes will be open to the press. Ninety minutes later Benfica manager Rui Vítoria will give his pre-match views at the stadium's conference suite alongside a player.

The match will kick-off at 21:45 local time.

Champions League post-match reaction

Julio Cesar

Goalkeeper Júlio César was one of Benfica’s star performers in Wednesday's dramatic win over Atlético Madrid, and afterwards admitted that it was "a perfect night.”

“The team deserves praise, Rui Vitória prepared the game very well, and that should be readily acknowledged. The boss made us believe that it was possible to win the three points here and we were able to."