Atlético's home strengths a concern for Benfica
Tuesday, September 22, 2015
After both sides made winning starts in Group C, Club Atlético de Madrid and SL Benfica come together for the first time on the competitive stage seeking a second three-point haul.
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Club Atlético de Madrid and SL Benfica meet for the first time on the competitive stage with both teams having made winning starts in UEFA Champions League Group C.
• The 2014 beaten finalists began their sixth group stage campaign with a 2-0 victory away to Galatasaray AŞ
• Atlético Madrid are taking part in the competition for the third year in a row – the first time they have achieved that feat.
• They put together four successive home victories in last season's tournament, winning their three group games in Madrid with a 10-0 aggregate score. They overcame Bayer 04 Leverkusen 1-0 at home in the round of 16 to draw the tie 1-1 on aggregate, winning the ensuing penalty shoot-out 3-2.
• The Rojiblancos then drew 0-0 at home to city rivals Real Madrid CF in the quarter-finals before bowing out 1-0 on aggregate.
• They have won 21 of their last 24 European matches at the Vicente Calderón. The only defeat was a 2-0 reverse to FC Rubin Kazan in the UEFA Europa League round of 32 in February 2013.
• Atlético had success the last time they met opponents from Portugal, defeating FC Porto home (2-0) and away (2-1) in the 2013/14 group stage. Atlético's overall home record against Portuguese opposition is W5 D2 L1.
• Competing in their 11th UEFA Champions League group stage, Benfica began with a 2-0 home victory over newcomers FC Astana.
• The Portuguese champions lost two of their away games in last term's group stage and drew the other 0-0. They finished fourth in Group C with five points.
• Those two defeats are the only reverses in Benfica's last eight European away fixtures.
• In only one of their last seven UEFA Champions League campaigns (2011/12) have the Eagles qualified for the knockout rounds. That year Chelsea FC beat them 3-1 overall in the quarter-finals.
• Benfica's last assignment with Spanish opponents came in the 2013/14 UEFA Europa League final when they drew 0-0 with Sevilla FC in Turin, losing 4-2 on penalties.
• It was the 23rd time they had faced Spanish sides in Europe with the record W5 D8 L10. They have not won in the last 15 matches (D7 L8) since a 2-1 victory at Sevilla's city rivals Real Betis Balompié on 29 September 1982.
• Their two European Champion Clubs' Cup triumphs, in 1961 and 1962, both came against Spanish teams, however – FC Barcelona and Real Madrid.
Coach and player links
• Jan Oblak helped Benfica win the Portuguese league and cup double in 2013/14 and played the full 120 minutes against Sevilla in the UEFA Europa League final.
• Tiago made 75 appearances for Benfica between 2002 and 2004, scoring 19 times.
• Raúl Jiménez (2014/15 – 21 apps, one goal), Eduardo Salvio (2010–12 – 44 apps, five goals), Pizzi (2011 – 11 apps), Sílvio (2011/12 – 10 apps) all joined Benfica after spells with Atlético.
• Sílvio is in his third season at Benfica on loan from Atlético.
• Ederson was a goalkeeping colleague of Jan Oblak at Rio Ave FC in 2012/13.
• Jonas netted twice against Atlético in eight games for Valencia CF while Eliseu scored once against them during stints with Málaga CF and Real Zaragoza.
• Jackson Martínez faced Benfica nine times with Porto, scoring three goals.
• International team-mates:
Nicolás Gaitán & Ángel Correa (Argentina)
Tiago & André Almeida, Eliseu, Pizzi (Portugal)
Filipe Luís & Luisão, Júlio César (Brazil 2009–11)
Filipe Luís & Talisca (Brazil)
• Atlético have won five of their seven matches in all competitions this season, the exceptions a 2-1 defeat by Barcelona on 12 September and Saturday's 1-0 loss at Villarreal CF.
• Those Barcelona and Villarreal goals are the only ones Oblak has conceded this term.
• Correa scored his first goal for the Rojiblancos in their 2-0 defeat of SD Eibar on 19 September.
• Fernando Torres, also on target in that game, is on 99 Atlético goals in all competitions.
• Koke (hamstring) missed the 2-0 victory against Getafe CF on 22 September and the Villarreal defeat.
• Including the Portuguese Super Cup, Benfica have not scored in three away matches this season – all of them 1-0 defeats.
• Ljubomir Fejsa has not played since matchday one due to a minor right foot injury.
• Júlio César sustained a right knee injury in the defeat by Porto but recovered to play 90 minutes in Saturday's 3-0 win against FC Paços de Ferreira.
• Jonas has seven goals in eight club appearances in all competitions this season.
• Injured on the final day of the 2014/15 campaign, Salvio underwent right knee surgery on 9 September.