Benfica vs. Braga Taca de Portugal last-16 tie

Benfica vs. Braga Taca de Portugal Preview – Prediction, Team news, Lineups

Benfica will host Braga at Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica for an intense Taca de Portugal last-16 fixture on Wednesday night.

Seeking to avenge their previous penalty shootout loss to Braga in last year’s quarter-finals, Benfica aims to dominate this encounter.

Match Preview

Benfica enters this match following a dominant 3-0 away win against Arouca in the Primeira Liga, marking their fifth consecutive victory and extending their unbeaten streak to 10 games across all competitions.

Second in the league table, they aim to secure a positive result in the cup after several impressive performances.

Despite their solid league form, Benfica has found it challenging against Braga lately, winning only four of their last 11 meetings. In their recent clash in the Primeira Liga, Benfica secured a narrow 1-0 away victory against Braga.

Braga, after back-to-back away wins against Nacional and Casa Pia to close 2023, started 2024 with a 1-1 draw at home against Vitoria de Guimaraes.

Currently fourth in the Primeira Liga, Braga, known for their attacking prowess, remains six points behind second-placed Benfica.

Having lost the previous Taca de Portugal final to Porto, Braga is determined to excel in this year’s competition and aims to advance by overcoming Benfica, although their recent history at Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica has been challenging, losing their last two visits by a significant margin.

Team News

Benfica continues to miss Juan Bernat, David Neres, Casper Tengstedt, and Alexander Bah due to injuries, although the former two might return by the end of this month.

Tomas Araujo might start in defense, while Marcos Leonardo, their recent signing from Santos, is likely to feature in attack.

Braga enjoys a clean bill of health but misses Simon Banza and Sikou Niakate due to Africa Cup of Nations commitments.

Jose Fonte and Serdar Saatci are expected to continue their partnership in defense, while Abel Ruiz is set to lead the attack in Banza’s absence.

Predicted Lineups

Benfica: (4-2-3-1)

Trubin;

Aursnes, A. Silva, Otamendi, Morato;

Neves, Kokcu;

Di Maria, R. Silva, Mario;

Cabral

Braga: (4-2-3-1)

Matheus;

Gomez, Fonte, Saatci, Borja;

Carvalho, A. Horta;

Lopes, Pizzi, R. Horta;

Ruiz

Prediction: Benfica 2-1 Braga

Both teams have been evenly matched in recent encounters, but Benfica’s impressive goal-scoring form might give them a slight advantage.

With Banza absent, Braga might find it challenging to outscore the in-form Benfica side, making a narrow Benfica victory the likely outcome.

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