Uefa Champions League - Manchester United v Benfica: Preview and more

Having won the previous two Champions League outings, Mourinho's men will be confident going into the match against Benfica

The 2017 UEFA Champions League group stage draw

Match: Manchester United v Benfica

Date: Wednesday, October 18

Time: 2:45 AM Thursday (SGT)/ 12:15 AM Thursday (IST)/ 7:45 PM Wednesday (BST)

Venue: Estádio da Luz, Lisbon

Live Stream: Starhub Go app (Singapore)

TV Info: Eurosport (Singapore)/ Sony Ten (India)/ BT Sport (UK)


United continued their unbeaten start to the season in all competitions on Saturday, with a hard-fought draw at Anfield in the Premier League. The Reds have now gone eight games without defeat in the league. Convincing wins against Basel and CSKA Moscow in the opening fixtures mean United can all but secure a place in the knock-out rounds with a win in Lisbon, while the Eagles will be looking to get their first points on the board in Group A, having lost both of their opening matches.

Rui Vitoria's side have begun their domestic season in good form, and they currently sit third in Liga Nos, having lost only once in their opening eight games. Veteran striker Jonas will be one to look out for, the 33-year-old Brazil international has already scored 10 goals in all competitions this term.

This match will mark a return to Lisbon for Mourinho, Nemanja Matic and Victor Lindelof. The United boss managed the Eagles in the 2000/01 season, replacing Jupp Heynckes early in the campaign, before resigning in December after club president Manuel Vilarinho refused to extend his contract. Meanwhile, Matic represented Benfica between 2011 and 2014, and amassed 73 appearances. And Lindelof was acquired from the Lisbon side in the summer, where he had spent the previous five years, winning three league titles.

Team News

Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic still remain sidelined and while Marcos Rojo is still working his way back to full fitness, the Argentina defender was part of the travelling squad to Lisbon. We'll have to wait for an update from the boss in Tuesday's press conference on the fitness of Eric Bailly, Marouane Fellaini and Michael Carrick - who all missed Saturday's clash with Liverpool. Meanwhile, Benfica right-back Andrea Almeida will miss out through suspension, after being sent off in their last European tie away to Basel.

Head to Head

United have a long, rich history of facing Benfica, and our head-to-head record in this fixture is a positive one, having won six of the nine previous encounters between the sides. Sir Matt Busby's side twice beat the Eagles en-route to the semi-finals of the European Cup in 1966, and, of course, the Reds beat Eusebio's Benfica in the 1968 European Cup final. United also met the Portuguese giants in consecutive Champions League campaigns in 2005/06 and 2006/07, coming out on top in three of the four encounters. And most recently, the points were shared in both matches of the 2011/12 Champions League group stages.