Club Brugge - Benfica Prediction and Analysis
Benfica go into this trip to Club Brugge as favorites in the 1/8 finals of the Champions League.
Last season, the giants from Portugal produced a memorable performance in the tournament, reaching the quarter-finals.
Where, after a strong rebuff, they were eliminated from the future finalist Liverpool.
No doubt the Eagles will look to repeat, and why not improve, this ranking of theirs now.
Especially since the draw turned out to be in their favor for this early stage of the direct eliminations.
Sending them the Belgian champion.
Club Brugge have been in poor form lately. Recording just one win in their last 15 games (1-9-5).
And it is the Champions League that is their only chance to make sense of their season, which is about to fail in the local championship.
But on the other hand, Benfica plays very powerfully.
The Eagles have won 4 consecutive victories "nil" in the last 4 rounds of the Portuguese championship.
Each of them was at least 2 goals ahead.
That's why I chose for today's match the prediction that Benfica will win by more than one goal difference.
But I used -1.0 Asian Handicap. Which means that if it succeeds by exactly 1 goal, the bet will be refunded.
Bruges is having a poor season in Belgium
Club Brugge is not playing well in the Belgian football championship this season.
They are a full 20 points behind league leaders Genk.
Thus, it is more than clear that the Blue and Black will not be able to defend the title won last year.
Club Brugge is in poor form with 1-9-5 in 15 games
Since the World Cup break, the Eagles have won just one of nine games in all competitions.
In the last of these, Club Brugge drew 1-1 with Saint-Gillois, despite being the home team.
The hosts did not play well in this match but still avoided defeat.
Club Brugge have problems in attack
One of the main problems for the Belgian team is related to scoring goals.
Because they have scored only ten goals in the last 11 games, which is too few for a team of their rank.
And this can go even deeper.
Because Club Brugge could be without two very important players on Wednesday night – Andreas Skov Olsen and Ferran Jutgla.
Skov Olsen has seven goals and three assists, while Jutgla has eight goals and four assists in the Belgian league.
If they can't play against Benfica, Club Brugge will have far fewer chances in forward positions.
Benfica is the sole leader in Portugal
Benfica have dominated the Portuguese league this season.
They are five points ahead of the next team in the table and their arch-nemesis Porto.
Benfica are undefeated in 8 games (6-2-0)
Benfica were on a run of four straight wins to nil until their last game.
When the team lost away from home after a draw in regular time and penalties for the Portuguese Cup against Braga.
The Eagles played well in the first thirty minutes.
But after Alexander Ba's red card, they should have been more defensive.
Roger Schmidt's side defended well for most of the game but eventually lost on penalties.
Benfica is motivated and without personnel problems
Despite this defeat, Benfica coach Schmidt was still satisfied.
He said he likes his players' attitude towards the game and that is the most important thing.
According to him, this penalty shootout loss will further motivate the team for the upcoming match against Bruges.
For which the coaching staff of the giant from Lisbon has no personnel problems with suspended or injured people.
Squads and injured footballers
Lineup: Mignolet; Mata, Hendrie, Mechele, Meyer; Ritts, Oniedika, Wanaken; Buchanan, Yaremchuk, Lang
Questionable: Buchanan, Skov Olsen, Jutgla
Lineup: Vlahodimos; Bach, Silva, Otamendi, Grimaldo; Lewis, Chiquinho; Mario, Rafa, Aursnes; Guedes