Leicester City will travel to Portugal to face FC Porto as the defending Premier League champions look to extend their unbeaten record in Champions League.
Having already qualified for the knock-out round with 13 points from group G, this match practically is not significant for the visitors. However, Porto’s hopes on qualifying depends heavily in this game.
A loss against Leicester and FC Copenhagen’s win in another fixture of group G will see Porto dump out of the famed competition. This means they will have to play in less fancied Europa League, a notion probably every Porto player will want to avoid.
The fourth team of the group G, Club Brugge, has not gained a single point so far. So it is very likely that Copenhagen will win that tie. So, this becomes a crunch match for the Portuguese giants.
Meanwhile, Leicester star striker Jamie Vardy was bullish when asked about the chances his club has in the Champions League this season.
“We’re in the last 16 of the Champions League. Nobody said we could win the Premier League, so why don’t we have a shot?”
Team News: Porto
Mexican defender Miguel Layun made his first team return after a few weeks, and he is an alternative to play at left-back against Leicester at the expense of Alex Telles.
Youngster Rui Pedro made his first team debut for Porto in the last game and scored the winner. However, it is expected that coach Nuno Esprito Santo will not put too much pressure on the 18-year-old by playing this pressure game.
Felipe and Andre Silva are just a booking away from a suspension. Despite this, they will be risked due to the sheer importance of this clash.
Porto: Predicted Lineup (4-4-2)
Casillas – Pereira, Marcano, Layun, Felipe – Corona, Pereira, Torres, Otavinho – Jota, Silva
Team News: Leicester City
The biggest absentee for Leicester is Kasper Schmeichel, as the goalkeeper will miss the match due to an injury. Schmeichel is anticipated to return before Christmas, and the goalkeeper has not featured for Leicester City since the start of November.
Robert Huth and Islam Slimani are a booking away from a suspension, and they are likely to be given a rest in order to keep them available for the round of 16 matches.
Leicester City: Predicted Lineup (4-2-3-1)
Zieler – Simpson, Morgan, Hernandez, Fuchs – Mahrez, Amartey, King, Albrighton – Okazaki, Vardy
Porto vs. Leicester City: Head-to-Head
Total games: One
Porto win: nil
Leicester win: One
Porto vs. Leicester City: TV Schedule and Channel
In the U.K., the match will be live on BT Sport 3, BBC Radio, and BT Sport Live Streaming. For other regions, the TV schedule can be found in the link here.
Porto vs. Leicester City: Prediction
Both teams are currently going through a rough patch at the moment. Leicester has won just a game in the last seven attempts, that against the minnows of the Champions League, Club Brugge.
The defending Premier League champions lost their latest game, against Sunderland, which made them sit just two points above the relegation zone.
The Foxes are far from last season’s miraculous performances in the league, so they are likely to give this match less importance by giving rest to key players in order to prepare for hectic December schedule.
Porto, similarly, is not playing well at the moment, which is proven by the fact that their last six games resulted in five draws. However, their latest win against Sporting Braga in the Portuguese league should give them much confidence to give Leicester a run for their money.
Final Predicted Score: FC Porto 2 – Leicester City
Porto vs. Leicester City: Betting Tips and Odds
- Porto Win: 3/10
- A draw: 21/5
- Leicester win: 10/1
- Under 2.5 goals: evens
- Over 2.5 goals: 8/11
- Both teams score: 11/10
- Both teams fail to score: 4/6
The odds were provided by Paddypower.
Key Stats to consider
- Porto has only won one of out their last six fixtures.
- Porto has lost just a match in this season’s UEFA Champions League.
- Leicester City is undefeated in this season’s Champions League, winning four and drawing one of their group matches.
The Porto vs. Leicester stats were provided by Whoscored.
[Featured Image by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images]