UEFA Champions League: Benfica vs Barcelona Preview

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UCL: Benfica vs Barcelona Preview
Lisbon, Oct 2: Unbeaten in their respective domestic leagues, Benfica entertain Barcelona in Match Day 2 of the UEFA Champions League group stage to be played at the Estadio da Luz in Lisbon.

Champions League 2012-13 | Fixtures | Results

The Portuguese giants have not won against Spanish oppositions in 30 years while the Catalans have an outstanding away record in the Champions League.

Benfica coach Jorge Jesus said he would be content with a point against the European giants but his side will be without ace striker Oscar Cardozo who has been ruled out due to a thigh injury.

Apart from Cardozo's injury, Benfica miss Brazilian centre-back Luisao who is serving a two-month ban from football for pushing a referee during pre-season friendly.

Meanwhile, Barcelona welcome back veteran defender and captain Carles Puyol after sustaining a knee injury while fellow centre-back Gerard Pique is sidelined. European Player of the Year Andres Iniesta returns to action but midfielder Thiago is sidelined for 2 months.

Trivia:

*Benfica have played 200 games in European competitions scoring 348 goals.

*The Portuguese side will be playing their 350th match in UEFA competition.

*Barcelona have scored 799 goals in UEFA competition.

*Barca reached a competition record fifth consecutive UEFA Champions League semi-final last season.

Probable Lineups:

Benfica (4-4-2): Artur-Pereira, Garay, Jardel, Melgarejo-Salvio, Aimar, Enzo-Perez, Gaitan-Rodrigo, Lima.

Barcelona (4-3-3): Valdes-Dani Alves, Puyol, Mascherano, Alba-Xavi, Busquets, Iniesta-Fabregas, Messi, Villa.

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