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Benfica vs Liverpool Champions League quarter-final preview: Where to watch, predicted line-ups

When is it? How can you watch it? What are the possible line-ups? All you need to know about the UEFA Champions League quarter-final first leg between Benfica and Liverpool.

Adel Taarabt (centre) in training with Benfica on Monday morning
Adel Taarabt (centre) in training with Benfica on Monday morning AFP via Getty Images

Benfica and Liverpool meet in the UEFA Champions League quarter-final first leg on Tuesday 5 April.

Benfica vs Liverpool at a glance

When: Tuesday 5 April (21:00 CET kick-off)
Where: Estádio do SL Benfica, Lisbon
What: UEFA Champions League quarter-final first leg (second leg 13 April)
How to follow: Build-up and live coverage will appear here
Semi-final opponents: Villarreal or Bayern

Guess the winner of every match from now until the end of the season to create your Champions League bracket.

Where to watch Benfica vs Liverpool on TV

Fans can find their local UEFA Champions League broadcast partner(s) here.

What do you need to know?

The Liverpool juggernaut rolls into Lisbon with many predicting a fairly smooth ride to the last four for a side that had won seven out of seven before a narrow loss in the last 16 at home to Inter; their first-leg endeavours were enough. Benfica were also second favourites against Ajax in the first knockout stage, though, and that didn't end too badly thanks to the exciting Darwin Núñez. Whether they can soak up the same kind of pressure again is the question.

Starting line-ups

Benfica: Vlachodimos; Gilberto, Otamendi, Vertonghen, Grimaldo; Weigl, Taarabt, Everton; Núñez, Gonçalo Ramos, Rafa Silva
Misses next match if booked: Grimaldo, João Mário, Otamendi, Gonçalo Ramos, Rafa Silva, Weigl, Yaremchuk

Liverpool: Alisson Becker; Alexander-Arnold, Konaté, Van Dijk, Robertson; Fabinho, Keita, Thiago Alcântara; Salah, Mané, Díaz
Misses next match if booked
: Jota, Mané

Away goals rule abolished

There has been a rule change for 2021/22: ties level after the second leg will go to extra time and a penalty shoot-out if required, irrespective of the number of away goals a team has scored.

Form guide

Form guide (all competitions, most recent first)
Where they stand: 3rd in Portuguese Liga, League Cup runners-up

Form guide (all competitions, most recent first)
Where they stand: 2nd in Premier League, FA Cup semi-finals, League Cup winners

Expert predictions

Every Benfica Champions League goal so far

Carlos Machado, Benfica reporter
With nothing to lose against one of the favourites to win the trophy, Benfica's primary goal will be to give themselves something to play for in the second leg, as they did against Ajax. Benfica know how easily Liverpool won at Porto in the group stage, but the Eagles are capable of hurting the Reds, not least with Darwin's and Rafa's pace up front.

Simon Hart, Liverpool reporter
Portugal has been a happy hunting ground for Liverpool of late, with three wins at Porto – for a combined score of 14-2 – in the last five seasons, most recently a 5-1 triumph last September. Lisbon is their destination this time as they eye a third Champions League semi-final under Jürgen Klopp and they have strong reasons for optimism: a run of ten straight Premier League wins, a defensive solidity that has meant just one goal conceded in their last eight away fixtures … and a wealth of attacking options that has brought 12 goals already on their European travels this term.

View from the camps

Liverpool vs Benfica: 2006 highlights

Jürgen Klopp, Liverpool coach: "Benfica maybe aren't where they want to be in their league but it's a tough opponent. We all know one failure, one little misstep, and at least one competition can be gone. That's no problem for us, we're just ready for the next challenge."

Virgil van Dijk, Liverpool defender: "Benfica are in the last eight. We can say one of the 'easiest' draws, but they are there for a reason. It's going to be difficult. We have to show them the respect they deserve. You can make whatever you want out of this, but it's going to be tough."

Nélson Veríssimo, Benfica coach: "We have to recognise that Liverpool is a team with great collective and individual competence, with a great coach, and that will force us to be at a very high level in both games. It's going to be a tricky tie but, as I said with Ajax, it's going to be 50/50."

Adel Taarabt, Benfica midfielder: "We have a chance as we're in the quarter-finals. Liverpool are a team we respect but we don't fear them. We know the quality they have but we have quality as well. We have players in attack that can make a big difference."

Where is the 2022 Champions League final?

The Stade de France in Saint-Denis will host the final on Saturday 28 May at 21:00 CET.

The winners gain a place in the 2022/23 UEFA Champions League group stage, if they have not qualified via their domestic competition.

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