2014-15 Champions League Match Preview: Benfica vs. Zenit St. Petersburg

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Updated: September 9, 2014
Benfica CL

Match Date: 16 September 2014 (local)

Match Venue: Estádio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica

(Featured image: Benfica | Source: lusogolo.com)

 

Benfica and Zenit have already met twice before, also in the Champions League for the 2011-12 season. Although the sides earned one victory apiece, Benfica performed better in terms of the number of goals scored (aggregate).

 

Benfica

Benfica’s last several matches have given them both the mountain’s summit and the river’s bottom. While they were scoreless in their battles versus Sporting CP, Ajax, Arsenal, and Valencia, they were successful against Rio Ave, Pacos de Ferreira, and Boavista. At the Champions League last season, they failed to advance through the Round of 16 after they only ranked third (beaten by Olympiacos on goal difference) in the Group round. However, this gave them ticket to book fixtures in the Europa League which they successfully pulled off and finished as runners up (to Sevilla) at the tournament’s conclusion, defeating PAOK, Tottenham, AZ, and Juventus in the process.

 

Zenit St. Petersburg

Zenit spent their last nine matches with zero hesitation of ending up victorious. Of these wins, seven were impressive clean sheets, but their most notable triumph was the one against Torpedo Moskva wherein they seized eight goals and conceded just one. At the Champions League last season, Sine-Belo-Golubye finished as runners-up to Atletico Madrid in the Group round. They then went on to score four goals on the two-legged encounter they had against Borussia Dortmund in the Round of 16, but eventually lost due to their rivals scoring one goal higher.

 

Champions League betting tip: Benfica will narrowly win over Zenit.