Geovanni to miss Liverpool tie

SL Benfica forward Geovanni is set to sit out the first leg of the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 tie against Liverpool FC after tearing a thigh muscle.

Race against time
The 26-year-old Brazilian injured his right thigh while scoring Benfica's first goal in the 4-0 home win against FC Penafiel last Sunday, and he could also be unavailable when his team travel to Liverpool for the return leg on 8 March.

Recurring problem
Geovanni, who has suffered similar injuries since moving to Benfica in the 2002/03 season from FC Barcelona, made five appearances in the UEFA Champions League group stage, with his only goal coming in the decisive 2-1 home win against Manchester United FC on Matchday 6.

Major blow
Geovanni's injury could scarcely have come at a worse time for Benfica, who trail leaders FC Porto by five points in the Portuguese Liga. He will sit out Saturday's away game against Vitória SC, with a potentially crucial home match to follow against Porto on 26 February.