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Familiar Zenit faces come back to haunt Benfica

Published: Tuesday 16 September 2014, 23.00CET
SL Benfica 0-2 FC Zenit
The Russian visitors overturned ten-man Benfica in Lisbon after establishing a two-goal lead and numerical advantage inside 22 minutes.
by David Crossan
from Estádio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica

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Match statistics

BenficaZenit

Goals scored0
2
Possession (%)44
 
56
Total attempts17
 
18
on target5
 
7
off target4
 
4
blocked8
 
7
against woodwork0
 
0
Corners8
 
7
Offsides1
 
5
Yellow cards1
 
1
Red Cards1
 
0
Fouls committed11
 
16
Fouls suffered16
 
11
Passes391
 
577
completed335
 
522

Standings

Legend:

P: Played   
Pts: Points   
Last updated: 25/06/2015 17:49 CET
 
Published: Tuesday 16 September 2014, 23.00CET

Familiar Zenit faces come back to haunt Benfica

SL Benfica 0-2 FC Zenit
The Russian visitors overturned ten-man Benfica in Lisbon after establishing a two-goal lead and numerical advantage inside 22 minutes.

Hulk scores the first goal of the 2014/15 UEFA Champions League season
Goalkeeper Artur is sent off on 18 minutes after bringing down Danny
Former Benfica midfielder Axel Witsel quickly doubles Zenit's lead
Benfica's 51-match unbeaten home run in all competitions ends
Next games: Leverkusen v Benfica, Zenit v Monaco (1 October)

Hulk and former SL Benfica favourite Axel Witsel scored the goals in a 2-0 Group C win as FC Zenit brought the Eagles' 51-match unbeaten home record to a spectacular end.

Zenit were on their way to an 11th straight victory this season from the moment Hulk delicately lifted them into a fifth-minute lead, the first goal of this UEFA Champions League campaign. It was the start of a forgettable opening half for Benfica. Goalkeeper Artur was dismissed on 18 minutes after bringing down Danny and two set pieces later it was 2-0, Witsel heading in a Danny corner.

Benfica's nightmare was the stuff of dreams for ex-FC Porto boss André Villas-Boas, whose Zenit side had brimmed with attacking intent from the off. Hulk had served notice of his threat by supplying a teasing cross which Oleg Shatov was centimetres away from connecting with, and the Brazil forward clipped in a delightful finish when Shatov returned the compliment.

Hulk sensed the kill, smashing an outrageous free-kick from near the centre circle which Artur beat away. Benfica posed a sporadic threat from set pieces, though, and Eduardo Salvio called Yuri Lodygin into action from open play. It merely brought brief respite, as Zenit looked capable of getting in behind the Benfica defence at will. Another precise Shatov pass left Danny one-on-one with Artur and the goalkeeper could only bring him down.

©AFP/Getty Images

André Villas-Boas enjoyed a dream start

Paulo Lopes, sent on for his UEFA Champions League bow at the age of 36, conceded within seconds as Witsel's powerful near-post header from a Danny corner had crossed the line before he could claw it away. The Belgian international midfielder – like Ezequiel Garay and Javi García playing against his old club – did not celebrate the goal.

Just after the hour Lopes got the faintest of touches to divert a Hulk shot from an acute angle onto the post after more sterling Shatov service. Benfica battled gamely despite their numerical disadvantage and after a slip by Nicolas Lombaerts, Lima's effort almost squirmed under Lodygin. At the other end Lopes tipped over another crunching Hulk strike and José Rondon slid a shot wide. It can only get better for Benfica.

Last updated: 29/05/15 7.01CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2015/matches/round=2000548/match=2014320/postmatch/report/index.html#zenit+leave+benfica+standing

Lineups

benfica

Benfica

zenit

Zenit

1
ArturArtur (GK)
Red Card18
1
LodyginYuri Lodygin (GK)
4
LuisãoLuisão (C)
4
CriscitoDomenico Criscito
7
SamarisAndreas Samaris
Substitution74
6
LombaertsNicolas Lombaerts
10
GaitánNicolás Gaitán
7
HulkHulk
Goal5
Substitution85
11
LimaLima
Substitution74
17
ShatovOleg Shatov
14
Maxi PereiraMaxi Pereira
Yellow Card60
19
SmolnikovIgor Smolnikov
Substitution46
18
SalvioEduardo Salvio
21
Javi GarcíaJavi García
Yellow Card65
19
EliseuEliseu
23
RondónJosé Rondón
Substitution76
30
TaliscaTalisca
Substitution20
24
GarayEzequiel Garay
33
JardelJardel
28
WitselAxel Witsel
Goal22
35
PérezEnzo Pérez
35
DannyDanny (C)

Substitutes

13
Paulo LopesPaulo Lopes (GK)
Substitution20
16
MalafeevVyacheslav Malafeev (GK)
2
Lisandro LópezLisandro López
2
AnyukovAleksandr Anyukov
Substitution46
9
DerleyDerley
Substitution74
5
RyazantsevAleksandr Ryazantsev
15
JohnOla John
8
MogilevetsPavel Mogilevets
Substitution76
24
CristanteBryan Cristante
10
ArshavinAndrey Arshavin
Substitution85
32
TiagoTiago
11
KerzhakovAleksandr Kerzhakov
34
André AlmeidaAndré Almeida
Substitution74
13
Luís NetoLuís Neto

Coach

Jorge Jesus (POR) André Villas-Boas (POR)

Referee

Svein Oddvar Moen (NOR)

Assistant referees

Kim Thomas Haglund (NOR), Frank Andås (NOR)

Fourth official

Sven Erik Midthjell (NOR)

Additional assistant referees

Ken Henry Johnsen (NOR), Svein-Erik Edvartsen (NOR)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution
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