Benfica boss Rui Vitoria has backed young goalkeeper Mile Svilar to respond positively to his “trial by fire” at the hands of Manchester United.
A fortnight ago in Lisbon, 18-year-old Svilar carried Marcus Rashford’s free-kick over the line to hand United all three points from their Champions League trip to the Portuguese capital.
But ahead of Tuesday night’s reverse meeting at Old Trafford, Eagles head coach Vitoria is convinced his teenage stopper is ready to put his debut mistake behind him.
He told a pre-match press conference: “Svilar had a trial by fire – it was his first game in the Champions League. He’s only 18, a very young age.
“But we only talk about him being 18 because his identification card says that. He actually shows maturity above his actual age.
“We are calm. Mistakes can happen to any player, whether young or older, but when we have maturity and quality we can face any situation and go into games with great conviction.
“He knows that to have a rosy future he will have to pass through these kinds of doors. He will play his part and he will be ready.”