Benfica defeats Maccabi 2-0 in its Champions League opener

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LISBON, Portugal — Benfica has defeated Maccabi Haifa 2-0 in the group stage of the Champions League and is off to a good start in its quest to repeat its quarterfinals run from a season ago. Rafa Silva scored in the 49th minute and Alejandro Grimaldo in the 54th to give the hosts the opening win. Benfica reached the quarterfinals last season after advancing past a group that included Barcelona and Bayern Munich. It defeated Ajax in the round of 16 before losing to eventual runner-up Liverpool.

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