Benfica goes into matchday 6 of the Champions League Group G with a chance of remaining in the European competitions. It was with the Europa League door open that the coach Bruno Lage previewed this Tuesday match (8 pm) against Zenit.
For Benfica it looks like the second leg of a qualifier because the number of goals scored influences continuity in Europe; Zenit need to win to have their fate on their hands. What kind of game can this scenario provide?
It can be completely different from a normal match. The important thing is what we can do, and our ambition must be in line with what we have been doing lately. We must give consistency and continuity to the good performances, and see these kinds of matches as opportunities and not afraid that something might go wrong. We must try to win and get the three points, and then we'll look at the standings.
Is it a determining factor for a Benfica to come in strong and score early? If the goals don't arrive early, how do you manage the anxiety?
We always have to come in strong. We talked about it in the last preview. More than just going in strong, we must be consistent throughout the 90 minutes. We have to feel that the hurry doesn't work, we will play against a competent opponent, we're not going to score two goals at once, but one goal at a time. We must be aggressive when we have ball possession, look for the spaces that the opponent offers us; without ball possession, we must have a determined attitude. Regardless of the competition and the opponent, our attitude must always be the same.
Text: Marco Rebelo and Diogo Nascimento
Pics: David Martins / SL Benfica