Barcelona midfielder Javier Mascherano is wary of Benfica, having lost out to them in his Liverpool days.
Mascherano was with the English club when they lost 2-1 to the Portuguese giants at the Estadio da Luz in the 2009-10 Europa League.
“I know several of their players, they have many Argentines,” the auxillary centre-back told a press conference ahead of Barca's meeting with the Eagles tomorrow.
“I came with Liverpool to play here and I know how hard it is to get a result. I have a lot of respect for them because I've played here and I have suffered.”
Mascherano echoed Coach Tito Vilanova's words by playing down the importance of this week, which culminates with the season's first La Liga Clasico on Sunday.
“I think this week is important, not vital. Every week is important at Barcelona. In football winning is always important, it gives your group stability.”
The 28-year-old also discussed those Blaugrana players currently injured, and his unorthodox centre-back pairing with Alex Song.
“That such important players like Andres Iniesta and Carlos Puyol might soon be with us will allow the team's level to rise.
“Coming to a new team, not speaking the lanaguage, not knowing your teammates…Song has done very well. As the games pass he will further demonstrate his qualities. I knew him in the Premier League, he has a lot of quality.”