Luis Díaz scores at the end of the curtain and leaves Benfica further away from the ‘socks’

O Benfica lost, this Tuesday, in the reception to Liverpool (1-3), and complicated the dream of reaching the semi-finals of the Champions League. The eagles were defeated in the first of two duels with the English and now they face the tough mission of turning around the tie at Anfield, next Wednesday.

When the result seemed to be fixed in the tangential advantage of the English, behold, Luis Díaz (87′) appeared to increase, even more, the gap in the marker and leave Benfica’s dream of reaching the semi-finals of the Champions League further.

game movie

Odysseas was in the spotlight in the first 15 minutes with three important interventions. The Greek goalkeeper got ahead of Salah in the opening minutes and prevented a potential danger move and later returned to be predominant by denying the goal to Naby Keita.

However, Liverpool would even get the goal after a corner. Robertson crossed and Konate (17′) jumped higher than anyone and everyonepouring an authentic bucket of cold water into the already freezing night in Luz.

Benfica tried to respond to the conceded goal and Everton had the first great scoring opportunity for the home team. Launched by Darwin, the Brazilian international entered at full speed through the left aisle, but did not have the aim to shoot in the frame of compatriot Alisson’s goal.

Soon after, Odysseas returned to action to prevent Luis Díaz’s goal. The former FC Porto appeared isolated, after a pass from Keita, but the Greek goalkeeper built a wall and prevented the second goal of the match.

The game continued in the same vein until the break, with Benfica looking for an equalizer and with Liverpool clearly comfortable and with an eye on the counterattacks. The second goal came after a loss, in the opposite penalty area, by Otamendi and Sadio Mané (34′) scored the second English goal at Luzafter assistance from Luis Díaz.

The new English goal dampened the eagles’ reaction, which, however, did not stop chasing the goal. The wall of Van Dijk and company seemed unbreakable, but on the other side the warning signs were constant. Before the break, Odysseas again denied Salah the goal and in response Rafa Silva had everything to watch Darwin for the goal, but he preferred to shoot and shoot… to the bench.

The half-time result mirrored the difference in the offensive flow of the two teams and Liverpool seemed to have solved the history of the night at Luz in the first 45 minutes.

The second half started in high tension and with Benfica closing the gap early on. Rafa crossed low, Konate missed the cut and Darwin (49′) didn’t forgive in Alisson’s face.

The goal left Luz on fire and Benfica went in search of a tie, taking advantage of the heat wave that came from the stands.

At 59 minutes into the game, a golden opportunity for Everton. The Brazilian player appeared in a frontal position, after a beautiful collective move by the eagles, but he shot poorly placed and allowed Alisson to defend the shot for a corner.

From the bench, Jurgen Klopp wasn’t liking what he saw in the second half and wasted no time in changing the team… tripling. Henderson, Firmino and Diogo Jota jumped onto the pitch and took the places of Thiago, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané.

At 66 minutes, the most controversial move of the game. Darwin fell in the penalty area, after being touched by Van Dijk, but the referee understood that there was no reason to call a penalty, in a decision that was also approved by VAR.

Liverpool managed to contain Benfica’s offensive incursions and resumed control of the match from the 70th minute. On the other hand, the eagles were losing steam, but Rafa Silva was very close to equalizing, when in the 82nd minute he almost stole the ball from Alisson at close range.

Until the end, Liverpool limited itself to managing the game with the ball and taking advantage of the spaces granted by Benfica. Luis Díaz (87′) had full rope and fixed the final result already close to the last whistleleaving the tie very well under way for the English.

Game time: Díaz’s goal, when the curtain fell, fell like a bucket of cold water on Benfica’s ambitions. An unfavorable 1-2 result is not the same as a 1-3. The eagles’ task is almost impossible.

Starting teams

Benfica’s eleven: Vlachodimos, Gilberto, Vertonghen, Otamendi, Grimaldo, Rafa Silva, Taarabt, Weigl, Everto, Gonçalo Ramos and Darwin.

Benfica substitutes: Helton Leite, Valentino, Morato, André Almeida, Meïte, João Mário, Paulo Bernardo, Diogo Gonçalves, Gil Dias, Nemanja, Seferovic and Yaremchuk.

Ours from Liverpool: Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Konaté, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Naby Keita, Thiago Alcântara, Sadio Mané, Luis Díaz and Mohamed Salah.

Liverpool substitutes: Kelleher, Joe Gómez, Matip, Tsimikas, Henderson, James Milner, Minamino, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Curtis Jones, Diogo Jota, Elliot and Roberto Firmino.

pre-game

18:20: Estádio da Luz starts to get ready for the later game.

18:00: Liverpool arrived in Lisbon late on Monday afternoon. Check out the images of this arrival.

5:41 pm: Abel Xavier, who has represented both clubs, believes that favoritism is on the English side, but maintains hope in an eventual qualification for the eagles.

17:00: Time to remember the Benfica squadreleased earlier this afternoon, and also to look at the one who is the likely eleven of eagles.

4:50 pm: UEFA recalls, through social networks, all the goals that were ‘painting’ Benfica’s campaign in this edition of the Champions League.

4:30 pm: There are three and a half hours left for the kick-off in Luz and it is worth remembering what was said by the two coaches at their respective press conferences foreshadowing the European clash.

preview

This Tuesday night promises to be one of great emotions at Estádio da Luz. Benfica welcomes the almighty Englishman Liverpool, in the first leg of the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Favoritism is, of course, on the side of the English team, but the last clash between the two teams in the Champions League is the strongest proof that there are always places for surprises.

However, if we compare the entire history of duels, Liverpool takes the lead with six wins in a total of ten official games played. The rest were won by Benfica, so there has been no tie, so far, between the two teams.

Thus, all the ingredients are gathered for a great European night in Luz, which will be sold out. The kick-off is scheduled for 20:00 and the referee will be in charge of the Spaniard Jesús Gil Manzano.

Follow, live and in detail, all the incidents of this match in Sports by the Minute.

Read Also: Dirk Kuyt warns Liverpool: “Benfica? Portuguese only want one thing…”

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