SL Benfica captain Simão declared himself satisfied with both his performance and that of his team as he returned to action to help the Lisbon giants to a goalless draw in their first Group F fixture away to FC København.
"I haven't played for the best part of a month, so I am delighted to be back," the 26-year-old told uefa.com. "We had opportunities to take all three points but couldn't do so, although it's important to take something from your first match so we are satisfied with the point." The game was uncharted territory for the Portuguese outfit, who had never faced København before, but they will return to more familiar ground on Matchday 2 when they take on Manchester United FC at the Estádio da Luz on 26 September.
The sides met in the group stage last season, with Benfica losing 2-1 at Old Trafford before reversing the scoreline on Matchday 6 to seal progress to the knockout stage as the English club crashed out. "It's always difficult to play against United but we are going to prepare thoroughly and aim to match last season's result," Simão continued. "We still have a few weeks to prepare for that game and we will certainly be stronger by then, you can be sure of that."
København play Celtic FC on the same night, a tie which could see another reunion of sorts with their skipper Tobias Linderoth likely to encounter his former Everton FC team-mate Thomas Gravesen in Glasgow. "We have a good chance against Celtic," he said. "We know they're a good team but we showed tonight that we are quite sound defensively and if we can create a couple of chances we could get a result."
Although the Danish champions will travel to Scotland with the cushion of a point, Linderoth allowed himself to wish for the luxury of three. "We are not 100 per cent happy with the point but we didn't create many chances so we can't complain too much," the 27-year-old told uefa.com. "We defended well but we simply needed to create more chances."
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