Hopes are not yet dashed for Portuguese giants Benfica who will be keen on getting past German powerhouse Bayern Munich in their second leg clash of the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal Wednesday. The hosts have a 0-1 deficit from the first leg.
Arturo Vidal scored the only goal of the match for Bayern in the first leg in as early as two minutes at the Allianz Arena. This time, it remains to be seen whether Benfica can do some magic of their own at the Estadio da Luz in Portugal.
"We have to play well defensively as we're facing one of the best teams in the world, one of the favourites to win the competition and a side who set up the same home and away," said Benfica coach Rui Vitoria to the UEFA ahead of the match.
One of the key players for the Portuguese side, Jonas, who has scored 32 goals this season so far, is suspended for the game. If that is not all, the fitness of star midfielder Nicolas Gaitan gives another worry to the Portuguese coach. "Nicolas Gaitán is a doubt and only before the match will I know if I can count on him," Vitoria added.
Bayern Munich have the experience of beating Benfica at the same stage of the competition last season, but this time they are not willing to bank on history.
"We are focused on tomorrow's match [against Benfica]," Bayern coach Pep Guardiola said ahead of the game. "We intend to defend well, score a goal and qualify for the next round. Regarding Benfica's absentees, we have had the same problem ourselves. For example, Javi Martínez was out for five months and we had to play without genuine central defenders during that time, so that's football."
"The teams know each other well as they just played last week, but tactically we know what to do. A player's mentality and character will be clear to see in front of 60,000 fans. We have to play well in order to get a result," he added.
For the away side, star winger Arjen Robben continues to remain on the sidelines. The Dutch hotshot had missed the first leg action of the fixture and will miss the second leg too.
Where to watch live
Benfica vs Bayern Munich is scheduled to kick-off at 8:45 p.m. CET (12:15 a.m. IST, 7:45 p.m. GMT, 3:45 p.m. ET), April 13.
Viewers in India can catch the game on Ten Sports, while the streaming option of the game is also available on tensports.com.
People in Germany can tune into Sky Sport 1/HD and Sky Sport 2/HD. The live streaming is also available on Sky Go Deutschland.
People in Portugal can tune into Sport TV 1 and RTP 1.