It’s mid-February, which can only mean one thing – the return of Champions League football. It’ll come as music to the ears of a neutral fan. And while Arsenal are the first English side in action this week, four sides are in action before the Gunners’ trip to Bayern Munich.
Two of those are Benfica and Borussia Dortmund, with the Portuguese giants hosting the first leg clash. And while BvB head into this fixture as the 13/10 favourites, only a fool would write off Benfica at 2/1.
For starters, Rui Vitoria’s men have lost just two competitive matches on home soil since December 2015. Meanwhile, while there’s no doubting the potential currently at Thomas Tuchel’s disposal, his Dortmund side are way off the pace in Bundesliga, and head into this game having lost away at Damstadt this weekend.
Granted, Dortmund did finish two points ahead of Real Madrid to top Group F, but Benfica fought hard to get out of Group B as runners-up to Napoli.
Benfica are a hard nut to crack at Estadio da Luz though. In fact, they’ve kept six clean sheets in their last eight home games. Couple that with the importance of preventing your opponents from nicking an away goal, and there could be some value in backing against both sides scoring at 11/10.
Having conceded 23 goals in the league already after 20 games this season, it’s clear where Dortmund’s weaknesses lie.
Their opponents, meanwhile, have been frightening in front of goal thus far. Already with 47 goals to their name, there aren’t too many sides in Europe’s top divisions that have netted more than them. We’re certainly tempted by the 11/2 on offer for the hosts to win with a -1 handicap here.
Benfica know the importance of taking a lead to Germany with them, but at the same time Dortmund know just how important an away goal may prove to be.
Does that point towards a home victory with both sides finding the net? At 9/2, it could be one to consider.
Of course, there’s always the chance that both sides will come out with one aim – not to lose. And 23/10 says we see a draw, while it’s 9/1 for a 0-0. It’s not something we want to see, but we’d kick ourselves if we didn’t throw it out there!
Click here for a full list of Benfica v Borussia Dortmund odds.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing