Sporting Lisbon v CHELSEA: Preview

Venue: Estádio José Alvalade
Date: Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Kick-off: 19.45 BST.

It’s a trip back to his home country tonight for Jose Mourinho as Chelsea face Sporting Lisbon in the Champions League. Mourinho may have started out at the club as Robson’s interpreter but there’ll be little room for sentimentality after a disappointing draw at home to Schalke in our last Champions League game.
Sporting who also started this season’s European campaign with a draw, are (like Chelsea) unbeaten in all competitions so far this season, so this might be a tough one.

MANAGER’S VIEWS
Ahead of tonight’s game, Sporting boss Marco Silva says “It will be a good game and we want to give a good impression of our team which is on the up.”
Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho meanwhile, says “(Costa) cannot be on top of his game. He’s doing almost nothing in training. He’s just resting and recovering from the tight muscle he has. I want to (select him). Let’s see what happens.”

SQUAD NEWS
For Sporting, Rami Rabia (abdomen) has been sidelined since sustaining an injury on 30 August.
For Chelsea, Ramires (abductor muscle) is likely to miss another game. Diego Costa could start on the bench again, with Loic Remy expected to start. Didier Drogba hasn’t travelled although Nathan Ake and Mitchell Beeney have. Mark Schwarzer is ineligible.

TEAMS
SPORTING (Possible line-up): Patricio; J Silva, Cedric, Sarr, Mauricio; Nani, Carvalho, Silva, Mario; Slimani, Carrillo.
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Courtois; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Fabregas, Schürrle; Hazard, Oscar, Willian; Rémy.

LAST MEETING
N/A

RECENT FORM
SPORTING: WDDDWD
CHELSEA: WWDDWW

OTHER STUFF
Sporting are unbeaten in their last 16 home games in Europe
Chelsea have won their last six games against Portugese sides, each by a one-goal margin.
Sporting have won their last three European matches at Estádio José Alvalade against English sides
Chelsea have failed to win their last three Champions League games

PREDICTION
If you look at both campaigns so far this season, there’s nothing between the teams. Their star man is Nani, but we have Costa – if he plays! Enough said.

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