Benfica get their season underway on Sunday night at the Estádio Municipal de Aveiro, where they will dispute the Supertaça with last season's Taça de Portugal winners Braga. Speaking at his pre-match press conference, Rui Vitória revealed that his players are raring to go.
"According to plan, we arrive prepared for this game. It is the first official game that gives a trophy which we want to win. The players (have shown) really great commitment and determination for this game. It was a very good week, which bodes well."
"We assume the responsibilities and the greatness of Benfica. We are here because we had a fantastic season and won the title. On the other side are a team that are in this Supertaça because they deserve it. We will respect SC Braga, that are a difficult team, that have good players and a good coach."
"It is always important to win trophies, whether at the start or the end (of the season). The game with SC Braga is the (immediate) reality, and afterwards a long season follows."
Up to five players could make their competitive debuts for the club in Aveiro on Sunday night. Vitória explained that while individual performances are important, the final result is his primary concern.
"This game is special because it is Benfica that are playing and they will be disputing a trophy. The important thing is that Benfica win the Supertaça. However, individual success is nice and motivates you to keep working."
As usual, the ex-Benfica youth coach gave no clues about his starting lineup, stating simply: "The team that will play is the one that we consider to be the best for this moment."
The 46-year old was equally tight-lipped about the club's plans in the transfer market: "Within the Caixa Futebol Campus we work without worrying about what happens outside of Seixal. For this game it'll be those (players) that are fit and ready. The market is open until the end of August, but we are working with joy."
Asked whether he feels under more or less pressure than at this time last year, Vitória insisted that for him, nothing has changed.
"The pressure to win has been the same since the first day. I'm working with conviction with the technical staff that I lead and with the players that I guide. This club has a fantastic structure and some wonderful fans that will be in Aveiro to support us."