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Oţelul determined to make their point at Benfica

Published: Tuesday 6 December 2011, 19.31CET
Dorinel Munteanu says "not losing would be a great result" for point-less FC Oțelul Galați, but they will have to be at their best at an SL Benfica side chastened by their first loss of the season.
by Carlos Machado
from Lisbon
Oţelul determined to make their point at Benfica
Benfica's Ezequiel Garay shares a joke in training on Tuesday ©Getty Images

Tournament statistics

BenficaOţelul

Goals scored13
 
3
Attempts on target59
 
24
Attempts off target71
 
30
Corners56
 
17
Offsides14
 
16
Fouls committed145
 
107
Yellow cards27
 
15
Red cards2
 
2
 
Published: Tuesday 6 December 2011, 19.31CET

Oţelul determined to make their point at Benfica

Dorinel Munteanu says "not losing would be a great result" for point-less FC Oțelul Galați, but they will have to be at their best at an SL Benfica side chastened by their first loss of the season.

FC Oțelul Galați coach Dorinel Munteanu says the Romanian champions, without a point in Group C, are determined to bow out on a high when they meet an SL Benfica team already assured of their place in the round of 16. Yet the Portuguese outfit have top spot in their sights and are determined to get right back on track after suffering their first defeat in 23 games this season on Friday.

We want to get back to the form that saw us go unbeaten for 22 games this season
Jorge Jesus
Our campaign has not been great, but we gained experience. Not losing here would represent a good result
Dorinel Munteanu

Benfica
Coach Jorge Jesus

We achieved our first goal by getting through the group stage. Now our destiny is in our own hands, and we want to finish first in the group. We want to perform like we have been doing in this competition, although we lost in Madeira in our last match [2-1 in the Portuguese Cup]. We want to get back to the form that saw us go unbeaten for 22 games this season. That defeat will not sap our confidence; we still believe in what we've built together.

Oţelul are tough opponents, but I believe all our players are feeling positive and are ready to put in a good performance. We have played some good matches but we haven't won anything yet; the principle is positive, then, but titles are what we are after. Who do we want in the round of 16 draw? We don't want Barcelona until the final.

Weekend result
Friday: CS Marítimo 2-1 Benfica (Roberto Sousa 60, Sami 70; Saviola 26pen)
Eduardo; Amorim (Maxi 85), Garay, Jardel, Emerson; Matić (Nélson 75), Witsel, Gaitan, Nolito; Saviola (Aimar 70), Rodrigo

• Óscar Cardozo was banned and Artur rested as Benfica's 22-match unbeaten start to the season ended with defeat in the fifth round of the Portuguese Cup.

Team news
Maxi Pereira serves a one-game ban on matchday six and Enzo Peréz is out with a knee injury. Luisão (thigh strain) is unlikely to feature, while Artur, Ezequiel Garay and Pablo Aimar are to be rested, with all three players one booking shy of a suspension.

Oţelul
Coach Dorinel Munteanu

It will be a hard game; you just need to look at the table. Yet Benfica didn't win their first two home matches in the group stage so we'll be giving our all to grab a result. Benfica are a strong side, group leaders, but we have to aim for a good result. We had no luck in the first match against Benfica, a much more experienced side.

We are under no pressure and, although we don't have any points, it has been good playing in this competition. It was a great achievement and I underline the fact that none of our three opponents beat us easily. Our campaign has not been great, but we gained experience. Not losing here would represent a good result.

Weekend result
Sunday: FC Vaslui 1-0 Oţelul (Wesley 11)
Brăneţ; Râpă, Perendija, Costin, Sălăgeanu; Filip (Paraschiv 46), Giurgiu; Iorga (Antal 55), Viglianti (Punoševac 81), Ilie; Pena

• With Ionuţ Neagu suspended, Oţelul suffered their ninth defeat in 19 games in all competitions. The Galati outfit's four-match winning league run had ended when they conceded an added-time equaliser in a 1-1 draw at FC Universitatea Cluj on 27 November.

Team news
Adrian Sălăgeanu (knee) and Cristian Sârghi (leg) have not travelled due to injuries, while Laurenţiu Buş has not featured since 2 October because of a left ankle problem.

Match fact
Benfica last welcomed Romanian visitors when facing FC Dinamo Bucureşti in the 2006/07 UEFA Cup round of 32 – substitute Fabrizio Miccoli's 90th-minute goal secured a 1-0 win en route to a 3-1 aggregate success. Captain Luisão is the squad's only survivor from that tie.

Last updated: 06/12/11 21.29CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2012/matches/round=2000263/match=2007662/prematch/preview/index.html#otelul+seek+benfica+consolation

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