Our prediction for this Champions League match:
Benfica will be looking to bounce back from a heavy 5-1 loss to Bayern Munchen when they host AEK at their Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica. The Eagles have already booked their place in the Europa League knockout stages, meaning that they have little to play for in their last group game. Anyhow, considering that AEK suffered a loss in each of their five group games in the elite competition, home win should be considered. The Greek side must be low on confidence ahead of Wednesday’s football match, therefore, we predict that they are going to return to Athens empty-handed. When the two teams met at Olympiako Stadio Spyros Louis Benfica recorded a 3-2 win over AEK Athens, which is yet another reason why we are tempted to put our money on the Portuguese side. A man to watch in the home team will be experienced attacker Jonas.
Highlighted Player (Andreas Samaris):
Greece international midfielder Andreas Samaris began his career playing for Panachaiki before his spells with Panionios and Olympiakos. SL Benfica is the first international experience for the 27-year-old player who arrived in Portugal in 2014.
A full international since 2013, Samaris represented Greece at the 2014 FIFA World Cup during which he managed to make his presence known and earn a move abroad. Andreas Samaris operates as a central midfield but is capable of filling in defensive midfielder role. Greek international was the mainstay for Benfica during his first two seasons at the club managing 46 Primeira Liga appearances during the period. He also added 12 Champions League appearances.
Andreas Samaras helped Benfica win two Primeira Liga titles, two Taca da Liga trophies and one Super Cup. Greek international was the regular performer for his national team during the unsuccessful Euro 2016 qualifying campaign with ten games to his name.
Highlighted Team (AEK Athens):
Established in 1924, AEK Athens are one of a number of Greek clubs based in Athens. The Enosis (Union) are well known for their passionate fans and Original 21 are considered the club’s main supporters’ group. AEK Athens play their home games in black shirts with yellow stripes and black shorts, while they often wear gray jerseys and yellow shorts when facing their rivals on the road.
Olympic Stadium in Athens is the club’s home ground and the venue can hold up to 69.618 people. AEK share rivalries with fellow capital clubs Panathinaikos and Olympiakos and the rivalry with Olympiakos was inflamed in 1996, when AEK former ace and then-coach joined the Thrylos. AEK have 12 Greek Super League trophies, but it has to be noted that they clinched their last domestic title back in 1994.
Speaking of the Greek Cup, the Enosis won their 15th trophy in the competition in 2016, with the team beating Olympiakos in the title game. In the 1966/1967 season AEK made it to the UEFA Cup semis, but Italian giants Juventus proved to be a big catch for the Greek side.