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Benfica knock Out Zenit, Reach UCL Quarter-finals

Benfica secured a 2-1 win against Zenith Petersburg at the Petrovski Stadium on Wednesday evening to advance to the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League.

Nicolas Gaitan and Anderson Talisca were on target for Benfica while Hulk was the scorer of Zenith's goal.

The first half ended scoreless and with 50% ball possession shared by both sides though they went close to scoring.

Benfica's Renato Sanches found himself unmarked in a promising position in the 20th minute after receiving a cross on the edge of the box and his attempt sailed wide of the left post.

Zenit Petersburg's Artem Dzyuba came close to scoring three minutes later. He connected with a pass inside the box, and he perhaps should have done better than direct his shot straight at Ederson in Benfica's goal.

Igor Smolnikov who came off the bench in the second half picked up a lofted cross inside the box with 29 minutes left on the clock and unleashed a low shot to the middle of the goal. His effort was denied by Benfica's keeper, Elderson.

Zenith went ahead in the 69th minute to take the aggregate to 1-1. Yuri Zhirkov's great cross found Hulk who scored with a simple header into an empty net. The goal was Hulk's fourth in seven Champions League matches this season.

Benfica will aggrieved as there was a foul on their player in the build-up to the goal.

Nicolas Gaitan levelled the score and made it 2-1 on aggregate for the Portuguese side in the 85th minute for Benfica when he nodded home the ball after Raul Jimenez's shot had come off the bar.
 

Second half substitute Anderson Talisca controlled the ball and fired past the Zenith keeper to score Benfica's second goal.

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