Benfica v Barcelona: Hosts can cause more problems for Koeman

Barcelona are struggling for form and Dan Fitch thinks that Benfica can take advantage in this crucial Champions League clash.

Benfica must sense opportunity

It's a huge game for Barcelona on Wednesday, as they travel to face Benfica.

Barcelona were defeated 3-0 at home by Bayern Munich in their opening match in Group E. As bad as that scoreline looks, the quality of Barcelona's performance was even more worrying, with a huge gulf apparent between two clubs who were regularly competing with each other at the business end of the Champions League, not so long ago.

The defeat to Bayern was followed by draws against Granada and Cadiz, which added to the pressure on the Barca manager Ronald Koeman. At the weekend Barcelona won 3-0 at home to Levante, but to put that result into perspective, their opponents are 17th in La Liga and have not won a game all season.

Benfica made a decent start to their Champions League campaign, with an away draw with Dynamo Kiev. They are top of the Primeira Liga, having won all seven of their games and will now fancy their chances of making the last-16, much more than would have been the case when the draw for Group E was originally made.

Barca should not be favourites

Barcelona are the favourites to win at 2.52, with Benfica at 3.0 and the draw at 3.6.

Anyone who saw the performances against Bayern, Granada and Cadiz, would doubt the right of Barcelona to be favourites. These odds should be much closer.

Benfica have scored at least two goals in ten of their 12 games this season. Their last two games have seen them win 3-1 against Boavista and then again by the same scoreline against Vitoria Guimaraes. You can back Benfica to score over 1.5 goals at 2.5.

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