Celtic won 2-1 at home to Spartak Moscow to finish with 10 points, three behind already qualified Barca. Benfica had eight.
The visitors carved a number of openings in the first half but were profligate with their shooting. They ran out of ideas and steam, although they almost grabbed a dramatic goal in time added on.
Lionel Messi came on as a second-half substitute but failed to add to his calendar year tally of 84 and ended up leaving the pitch on a stretcher after a collision with visiting keeper Artur at the end of the match. (Writing by Mark Elkington in Madrid, editing by Alison Wildey)