SC Braga – Benfica / Liga NOS – On Saturday night, a very interesting match will be played as part of matchday 18 of the strongest Portuguese league, as SC Braga and third-placed Benfica, who are currently three points clear, face each other. Both teams are in very good shape and are in the race for the first two places leading to the Champions League. They have met twice this season in Lisbon and while Benfica drew 3-1 in the championship, they drew 1-1 in the League Cup.
With the mentioned draw Braga also ended his negative series of even eight defeats in series in duels against Benfica, although both teams ultimately remained without reaching the semi-finals of the League Cup. Many believe that Braga wanted to end the League Cup competition to concentrate on two very important games in the context of the 1/16 finals of the European League against the French Marseille. In addition, they are still in the race for the first two places in the domestic championship.
Currently Braga has only six points less than second-placed Sporting and eight points behind the leaders Porto. As they are in a series of three championship games, they will compete in this duel against the current Portuguese champion in a good mood. However, they are aware that they have to deliver a great match on Saturday if they want to remain unbeaten. Goalkeeper Marfona, center-back Ferreira and midfielders Mauro and Fransergio are all out injured.
As far as the current Portuguese champions are concerned, we said in the introduction that they currently occupy third place in the Portuguese league. Certainly they will do their best to catch up by five or three points on Porto and the city rivals Sporting, especially as they are eliminated from the Champions League and the two cup competitions so that they can devote themselves to the championship maximum. In the championship they are currently in a series of seven wins and only two draws.
It is interesting that they have just won these two draws in matches against Porto and Sporting, so it will be interesting to see how they cope with very unpleasant rivals from Braga, who only have three points less. As for the line-up for this match, coach Rui Vitoria will probably face the same line-up as in the last few rounds, especially as he only has to give up injured center-back Luisao and midfielder Samaris.
Tip for SC Braga – Benfica :
-Both teams to score / YES / @ 1.80