Taslica strikes to earn Benfica win against AS Monaco


Taslica scored a valuable goal to give Benfica their first win in Champions League Group C as they claimed a hard fought 1-0 victory over Monaco on Tuesday night. The Brazilian produced the goods from close range in the 82nd minute as the Portuguese side look to avoid elimination at the group stage for the third successive season. The two sides drew 0-0 on Matchday Three with Benfica desperate for a win as before kick-off they were bottom of the group with one point. Benfica started the brightest and would have gone ahead had Eduardo Salvio found a more clinical touch to a chance created by Talisca. Despite dominating proceedings, Benfica were unable to trouble Monaco goalkeeper Danijel Subasic in the first half, who had yet to concede his first goal in the competition this season. Monaco played a high line but the hosts could not unlock the French side's defence and exploit the space. Benfica almost took the lead in the 45th minute when Nicolas Gaitan's shot was blocked by Andrea Raggi. However their lack of a cutting edge and clinical finish in the final third left the match deadlocked at 0-0 at the break. Monaco had a good chance to open the scoring in the 54th minute when full-back Layvin Kurzawa timed his run to meet Fabiano's cross, but he was unable to control the direction of his header. Minutes later, Subasic made his first real save of the night when he dived athletically to deny Talisca's strike which looked destined for the top corner. Monaco winger Yannick Ferreira-Carrasco, who had been causing Benfica some problems without reward, almost scored a fantastic solo goal but was denied by a good save from Julio Cesar at the near post. Cesar saved another Kurzawa effort in the 77th minute as the match seemed destined for a goalless draw but the tie then swung Benfica's way as Taslica notched the opening goal. The midfielder became the first player to beat Subasic in Group C with a close-range finish to Enzo Perez's outswinging corner with eight minutes left on the clock, with the hosts then holding on to claim a slender win.