2020-21 UEFA Europa League Group Stage: Benfica vs Rangers

Benfica welcomes Rangers to Estadio da Luz, Lisbon, Portugal, for a mouth-watering top of Group D clash in 2020-21 UEFA Europa League. 

Both teams enter this match locked on six points apiece after two rounds of group games, meaning that the winner of this match will go top of Group D whilst the loser sits second heading into the three-week break.

 

Team News

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Alex Grimaldo is a doubt for Benfica with an ankle sprain which saw the defender substituted against Belenenses.

Jean-Claire Todibo (Achilles), Andre Almeida (knee) and Andreas Samaris (unspecified) are also expected to sit this game out.

Rangers have a near full squad available for selection as Nikola Katic remains absent with a knee injury.

 

Stat Attack

  • This is Rangers’ first-ever meeting against Benfica in all UEFA competitions.
  • Benfica have won all five of their previous home clashes against Scottish opposition across all UEFA competitions (W5), keeping four clean sheets across those five victories.
  • Rangers are unbeaten in nine previous away matches against Portuguese opposition across all UEFA competitions (W7, D2).
  • Pizzi has scored three goals in two Europa League appearances for Benfica this season.
  • Eight of Rangers’ 14 Europa League goals this season has come after half-time.

 

Prediction

Benfica were absolutely ruthless in their win over Liege last week which is a real worry because if they turn up and are even sharper than they were last week, Rangers will simply need their defensive A game in terms of discipline and defending if want to maintain their unbeaten away record against Portuguese opposition.

Rangers however have shown that they’re no pushovers with six consecutive clean sheets so I can see a tense end-to-end battle between these two teams but if Benfica put in another attacking display, I just can’t see Rangers winning here.

Prediction: Benfica 2-1 Rangers

Result: Benfica 3-3 Rangers

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