Spartak vs Benfica: no chance for a miracle?
In the most recent head-to-head match held in Moscow Spartak beat Benfica, but will Red-Whites secure another victory on August 4? You will find the answer in our prediction.
In the previous season Spartak won the desired Champions League spot, finishing ahead of Lokomotiv. On the summer Rui Vitoria took over the team, filling in the place of Domenico Tedesco, who was loved by fans. So far Red-Whites are not so active on the transfer market, but we will probably see some high-profile signings in case if Moscow team will be closer to a group stage.
Spartak played two official matches in the new season. In the first one Red-Whites were unexpectedly beaten by Rubin (0:1), notable that only one week before that match Spartak smashed Rubin in the Parimatch Premier Cup (4:0).
In the second round Spartak had no room for error - if they would drop points in a game against Krylja Sovetov, new manager would have ran out of trust from the fans of capital club and it would jeopardize their championship ambitions. Eventually Red-Whites got a modest 1:0 victory in Samara - Alexandr Sobolev scored the only goal in the game from a penalty kick.
In the previous season Benfica brought Jorge Jesus back to head coach position. Many big-money signings were made, Eagles were extremely ambitious, but eventually Benfica failed to qualify for the group stage of Champions League, losing in qualification.
Eagles also failed in the domestic league - Sporting won a title with ease and Porto finished on a second spot, sending Benfica to the Champions League qualification. Jesus also failed to win a Portuguese Cup - Eagles were beaten by Braga in the final (0:2).
Just like always, many players were sold in the summer, bringing some money to the club budget - Pedrinho signed for Shakhtar Donetsk, young full-back Nuno Tavares was sold to Arsenal, reserve players Franco Cervi (Celta) and Lucas Caio (Sharjah) have also left the club. Out of signed players we can highlight a former Genk player, Roman Yaremchuk, and Soualiho Meite, who was playing great in Torino and Milan.
Out of four most recent matches of Benfica two finished with that score
This bet was successful in four most recent matches of Benfica
In six out of seven most recent matches Spartak scored in the second half
In three out of four most recent matches of Benfica penalties were given
Spartak is looking weak at the start of the season - we can't say that Red-Whites put up a bad performance in the match against Rubin, but Vitoria is yet to build a strong team. After the change of head coach Red-Whites have to start everything from a scratch, because now it is obvious that Portuguese manager doesn't want to play by Domenico Tedesco's strategy.
Benfica is a more stable club now - they don't have many sidelined players and their squad is simply better. Spartak has only one possible advantage - they started the season earlier than Benfica, but looking at first two matches of Red-Whites, it becomes clear that they failed to gain optimal form.
We believe that visitors will have more chances for a victory. Our prediction - Asian handicap (0) on Benfica
Prediction: Handicap (0) on Benfica
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Benfica has a significant advantage in class over Spartak, so Portuguese team is an obvious favourite. But it will be the first official match of the season for the Eagles, so we can't assess their current form. Spartak is not in the best possible form as well. We believe that Eagles will be able to record a victory with a one goal margin.
Our second bet is on Benfica to win with a one goal margin.