Dinamo Zagreb vs Benfica
Competition: UEFA Europa League
Date: 7 March 2019
Kick-off: 18:55 CET
Dinamo Zagreb ruled on the pitch in their return leg against Viktoria Plzen in the previous round, making things look easy. After losing 2-1 in Czechia, they needed a single goal to qualify, and by halftime they were 2-0 up. Bruno Petković’s goal in the 73rd minute was the cherry on top. On Saturday they drew 1-1 with Lokomotiva Zagreb, a rather unexpected result, even though should be mentioned that they played with several reserves. They are not just leading in Croatia’s championship, they are 14 whole points ahead of second-placed Rijeka, so they could… afford to drop a couple of points last weekend, if that meant having their regulars at their 100% against Benfica. No players missing due to injuries or cards. Dinamo are expected to start with Livakovic, Leovac, Dilaver, Théophile-Catherine, Stojanovic, Sunjic, Orsic, Gojak, Olmo, Hajrovic and Petkovic.
Things couldn’t be much better for Benfica at the moment. They just beat Porto away from home, 1-2, and left them two points behind them, second, in Portugal’s championship table. In the Europa league round of 32, they beat Galatasaray 1-2 in Istanbul, and a goalless draw back home in the return leg was enough to secure them a spot in the last 16 of the competition. Eduardo Salvio, Tyronne Ebuehi and Germán Conti are injured, unavailable. Jardel and Lubomir Fejsa were considered doubtful the day before the match. The Lisbon side are expected to start with Vlachodimos, Almeida, Dias, Ferro, Grimaldo, Pizzi, Fernandes, Luis, Rafa, Félix and Seferovic.
Previous five matches:
Lokomotiva Zagreb vs Dinamo Zagreb 1-1
Dinamo Zagreb vs Osijek 3-0
Dinamo Zagreb vs Viktoria Plzen 3-0
Dinamo Zagreb vs Slaven Koprivnica 3-0
Viktoria Plzen vs Dinamo Zagreb 2-1
Porto vs Benfica 1-2
Benfica vs Chaves 4-0
Benfica vs Galatasaray 0-0
Desportivo Aves vs Benfica 0-3
Galatasaray vs Benfica 1-2
Dinamo’s next game is on Sunday, again at home, versus Rijeka (Croatia championship). Benfica are hosting Belenenses on Monday (Portugal championship).
Dinamo Zagreb vs Benfica: Head to head Stats
Dinamo have hosted Benfica once before, almost 40 years ago. It was in 1980, a goalless draw.
Dinamo Zagreb vs Benfica: Prediction
Benfica are considered favorites to win the game. I’m going against the odds, counting on Dinamo to earn at least a draw.
Dinamo Zagreb vs Benfica: Betting Tips
Dinamo’s win in “draw no bet” is at 2.17, with their double chance at 1.60. “Dinamo or draw”, combined with “under 3.5 goals”, is at 1.95.