Semedo relieved at first-team return

Nelson Semedo

Benfica claimed a narrow victory at Oriental today to keep their Taça da Liga campaign on track. There were opportunities for several players that have rarely featured of late, with starts for Ederson in goal, Lindelöf and Sílvio in defence, and Talisca, Samaris and Đuričić in midfield. Nélson Semedo made his injury comeback, and was understandably relieved to get back on the pitch after three months on the sidelines.

"I feel well. I was accompanied at Benfica by great professionals, and, with the help of the team, I returned in the best possible manner. I still lack rhythm and now is time to continue working hard to return to the form I was in before I was injured. With the help of the team it will be easier. I will play for the A-team, or, if necessary, I will play for the B-team... We are Benfica!"

Highlights: Oriental 0 - 1 Benfica

Oriental x Benfica squad list

Rui Vitória named his 18 player squad list ahead of Tuesday's League Cup meeting away to Oriental.

Changes to the usual starting line-up against the Segunda Liga side are expected as Jonas, Júlio César, Eliseu and Fejsa have been left out altogether.

Salvio, Nuno Santos, Luisão and Gaitán continue their recovery.

Goalkeepers: Ederson and Paulo Lopes
Defenders: Lisandro López, Grimaldo, Lindelof, Sílvio, Jardel, André Almeida and Nélson Semedo
Midfielders: Samaris, Renato Sanches, Gonçalo Guedes, Pizzi, Djuricic, Talisca and Carcela
Forwards: Raúl Jiménez and Mitroglou

Raúl reflects on hard-fought victory

Raul Jimenez

Mexican marksman Raúl Jiménez came off the bench to score a 90th minute winner in Benfica’s opening Taça da Liga game against Nacional da Madeira. After the match, Jiménez gave an honest appraisal of his side’s performance.

"We gave a good exhibition. At the beginning we were able to have more of the ball, and only failed to finish the opportunities that we had during the first half. It only lacked a little more accuracy, but we know that the game has 90 minutes.”

Benfica primed for League Cup action

Benfica begin their Taça da Liga campaign on Tuesday night with a home game against Nacional da Madeira. Already eliminated from the more prestigious Taça de Portugal, winning the trophy is clearly a priority for head coach Rui Vitória.

"Benfica enter every competition to win... We know that we are not the only ones, therefore it will be an interesting fight, a difficult fight, but we just want to get off on the right foot with a win."

Squad List: Benfica x Nacional da Madeira

Rui Vitória has selected an experienced squad to face Nacional da Madeira in the opening group game of the 2015/16 League Cup. It remains to be seen whether he will give opportunities to fringe players such as Lindelöf and Cristante, or if he will seek to build momentum with his first choice starting eleven. Filip Djuricic has been overlooked once again and looks destined to leave the club in January.

The game at the Estádio da Luz kicks off at 19:45 local time, and will be officiated by João Capela. Benfica are the current title holders and have won the competition a record six times since its introduction in the 2007/08 season.

Goalkeepers: Ederson, Júlio César and Paulo Lopes.
Defenders: Lisandro, Lindelöf, Eliseu, Sílvio, Jardel and André Almeida.
Midfielders: Fejsa, Samaris, Pizzi, Cristante, Talisca, Carcela, Renato Sanches and Gonçalo Guedes.
Forwards: Raúl, Mitroglou and Jonas.

Benfica enter League Cup frame

The draw of the League Cup Round 3 Group Stages will take place on Wednesday 28th October 12:00 GMT at the Liga headquarters in Porto, where the top Liga 2014/15 Liga clubs enter the frame: SL Benfica, FC Porto, Sporting Lisbon and SC Braga.

The four clubs will join the already qualified 12 in the Taça CTT 2015/16

Liga NOS: Marítimo, Paços de Ferreira, Nacional, Arouca, Rio Ave, Belenenses and Moreirense
Segunda Liga: Oriental, Famalicão, Portimonense, Leixões and Feirense

Benfica through to League Cup final!

Benfica beat Vitória de Setúbal convincingly tonight to reach their 6th League Cup final in the history of the competition which began in 2007/08.

The manager kept consistent in his first XI by fielding players with the least amount of playing time with the likes of Lisandro Lopez at centre back and youngster Gonçalo Guedes in the right wing starting.

Ruben Amorim returns to the squad list

Jorge Jesus has listed midfielder Rúben Amorim for tonight's game against Vitória de Setúbal.

Although giving no guarantees that Amorim will be on the bench, it's a step forward for the Portuguese after a 5 month absence on the sidelines after a leg injury at the start of the season at Boavista.

Captain Luisão has not been selected; alongside Maxi Pereira, André Almeida and Gaitán.

Gonçalo Guedes, Benfica's promising youngster, continues to win the manager's vote and could also feature tonight.

The match kicks-off tonight at 19:45 local time.

Benfica to face Vitória de Setúbal in League Cup semi

Benfica's League Cup semi-final is now confirmed and will play Liga opponents V. Setúbal.

The Setúbal side won Boavista 3-0 to pip Sporting to the semis.

The match will be played on 11th February at 19:45 GMT, while the other semi-final between Marítimo and FC Porto will bizarrely be played on 2nd April... another Portuguese Football League touch.