Benfica vs Arsenal – LIVE UEFA Europa League Round of 32 First Leg Football Match Reddit Soccer Score Today February 18-02-2021
Benfica vs Arsenal live score: Match details
Match: Benfica vs Arsenal
Competition: UEFA Europa League Round of 32 First Leg
Date: February 18, 2021
Kick-off time: 8:00 pm, February 18, 2021 (UK time)
Stadium: Stadio Olimpico (Rome, Italy)
Kieran Tierney returns to the squad after a leg injury; Thomas Partey remains out; Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang also set to travel to Rome after tattoo picture; follow with our dedicated live blog across Sky Sports’ digital platforms Benfica right-backs Andre Almeida and Gilberto are both set to miss the Europa League encounter through injury with Jardel also a long-term absentee. There will be some familiar faces in the Benfica ranks too with former Premier League players Jan Vertonghen, Nicolas Otamendi and Adel Taarabt expected to feature.
Two European giants aiming to maintain their unbeaten records in the 2020-21 Europa League do battle at Rome’s Stadio Olimpico on Thursday as Benfica play Arsenal in their ‘home’ leg. The Portuguese outfit qualified from Group D as runners-up to set up a last-32 tie with Arsenal, who swept aside the competition in Group B to progress in first place. Jesus witnessed his side navigate their Europa League group-stage campaign unbeaten, but as has been the case with their top-flight fortunes, failure to convert draws into wins saw them qualify in second behind Rangers, although the 18 goals that they notched up was the third-highest across all groups behind Bayer Leverkusen and their midweek opponents Arsenal.
Arsenal supporters will be in for a shock if former Queens Park Rangers’ trickster Adel Taarabt starts in his new defensive midfield position on Thursday. Gianl-Luca Waldschmidt returned from injury in Benfica’s 1-1 draw away to Moreirense at the weekend. Jardel and Andre Almeida are expected to miss out here. Former Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen will rekindle his old North London rivalry with the Gunners here. Arsenal will also know a lot about his defensive partner, Nicolas Otamendi from his playing days with Manchester City.
Arsenal avoided a fourth successive winless game in the Premier League when they battered Leeds 4-2 at the weekend, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang rediscovering his shooting boots and netting a first league hat-trick for the north Londoners, but attention must now turn to a daunting away game against Portuguese giants Benfica.
The Gunners cantered to top spot in Group B, avoiding a banana skin slip-up in what many would have considered a favourable draw before a ball was kicked, with Mikel Arteta’s side posting six wins out of six. But, in Benfica, they face their most difficult challenge in Europe so far this season.