Benfica 1-0 Borussia Dortmund: Kostas Mitroglou earns Champions League win
By Stephen Mills
Last Updated: 14/02/17 9:55pm
Kostas Mitroglou's goal earned Benfica a 1-0 victory over Borussia Dortmund in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 clash.
The former Fulham striker poked home the only goal of the game, against the run of play, three minutes into the second half of Tuesday night's match at the Estadio da Luz.
However, it was a night to forget for much-hyped Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who saw a penalty saved and missed two glorious chances before being substituted after 62 minutes.
And those costly misses helped to ensure Portuguese champions Benfica are in the driving seat ahead of the return leg in Germany on Wednesday March 8.
The away side dominated for long spells, but their two key players in the absence of the injured Mario Gotze - Aubameyang and 19-year-old Ousmane Dembele - failed to convert presentable chances in the first half.
Aubameyang missed a golden chance after 10 minutes when Dembele stole the ball in midfield and put the forward clean through with a low, through-ball, but after taking a touch he rifled wastefully over goalkeeper Ederson's bar.
Dembele was then denied by a good block by Benfica defender Victor Lindelof on 23 minutes after being presented with a close-range chance following good work from by Marco Reus and Lukasz Piszczek.
The Bundesliga side were made to pay for their profligacy three minutes into the second half when Mitroglou opened the scoring.
Pizzi's corner was headed down by Luisao and the unmarked Greek striker touched the ball in front of a sprawling Roman Burki before bundling home from a yard at the second attempt.
It was Benfica's only genuine chance of the match and their supporters were cheering again five minutes later when Aubameyang suffered his second shocking miss of the night.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos found the striker in space on the penalty spot and he turned with only the goalkeeper to beat, but shot over the bar.
Aubameyang was given a chance to make amends from the penalty spot on 57 minutes when Ljubomir Fejsa slid in on Marc Bartra with a hand raised and was correctly penalised for handball.
However, Aubameyang's penalty was hit straight down the middle with little power, offering goalkeeper Ederson the chance to make a simple save.
And Dortmund boss Thomas Tuchel responded in brutal fashion, substituting his striker minutes later and replacing him with former Chelsea man Andre Schurrle.
Dortmund did little after his departure, although Ederson made a brilliant save to his right to deny Marcel Schmelzer's long-range effort six minutes from time.
Benfica's players and fans were visibly delighted with a 1-0 win as the final whistle blew to confirm Dortmund will not take an away goal into the return leg in three weeks' time.