Club Brugge to earn home win

Club Brugge to earn home win

Club Brugge and S.L. Benfica meets for the first leg of their Round of 16 meeting in the Champions League. This meeting will be hosted by Brugge on February 16, 2023, at 4:00 AM (GMT+8). Brugge is currently not doing well at home, being winless on their last seven home games. With that, even though they have the home crowd on their backs, they still cannot have the confidence to win this game. As for Benfica, they are not doing better than their opponent, as they are also not doing well on the road. This squad wants to avoid back-to-back away matches without a win.

This will be the first time that these two teams will meet each other across all competitions. However, this is not the first time they will meet teams from their respective nations. In fact, the hosts already won five matches against a team from Portugal. The visitors on the other hand have listed 12 wins against any Belgian teams. In the Champions League, the hosts are actually a surprise, as they will be competing in the knockout stage for the first time. As for the visitors, they also did well on their group stage, as they were unbeaten in their group stage. They won Group H, ahead of giants, PSG and Juventus.

Club Brugge

Champions League: Club Brugge
Photo courtesy of Getty Images

This squad qualified for the knockout stage for the first time, as they finished their group stage just a point behind the group winners. They are a surprise this season, after securing a spot in the Round-of-16. On their last match, this squad had a 1-1 draw against Union St. Gilloise on their domestic league game. With that, they were able to extend their unbeaten run across all competitions into six games. In the Champions League, this squad is actually doing well, being the joint-second-best defensive team in the contest. This year, they only recorded one loss, but have drawn dive of their last six games. They come into this game hoping to continue their good run in the Champions League.

Due to minor injuries, Buchanan, Olsen, and Jutgla are all a doubt, and needs to be assessed before this game. Aside from them, there are no other new fitness issue for this squad.

S.L. Benfica

Champions League: S.L. Benfica

This squad have dominated their group stage, being unbeaten from their matches in Group B, winning their group stage. What is more surprising is the fact that they won over giants, PSG and Juventus. Last season, they are also able to reach the quarterfinals, but they eventually lost against Liverpool. However, they are eliminated in the quarterfinals of their domestic league, due to their penalties. During the four of their last five games, this squad were able to keep clean sheets in four of their five games. As they come into this game, they are hoping to get a win, in order to avoid back-to-back away games without a win. This knockout match is the fourth time they qualified for this round in the last 11 Champions League seasons.

This squad is fortunate as they can expect a healthy squad in this game, with no new health concern.

Prediction:

S.L. Benfica (2.5)
Odds: -0.84

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