Champions League Matchday 2: Sporting v. FC Basel 867-5309 PreviewBy: Greg | October 1st, 2008
2008/09 Champions League Group C Matchday 2
Sporting v. FC Basel 1893
October 1, 2008 @ 2:45 PM Eastern
Estádio José Alvalade, Lisbon, Portugal
Both teams come into this match after losing their first contest of the tournament. Barcelona and Shakhtar Donetsk are both on three points and face off today in the Ukraine. Sporting were early cautious favorites to make it out of this group with Barcelona, and this match is viewed as a must win. Shakhtar Donetsk have shown that they are no slouches and for Sporting to take only one point off of Basel at home would be nothing short of disaster for Bento’s Boys.
Possible Sporting Starting XI
Yannick Djaló (But Quite Probably Derlei) – Hélder Postiga
Vukčević – João Moutinho – Rochemback
Grimi – Polga – Tonel – Abel
I think Yannick is going to be benched for the start of this match because of his poor performance away at Barcelona as well as his dip in form which showed against Benfica with a shot that he made a lumberjack sized meal out of. At the same time, Basel aren’t Benfica or Barcelona and Yannick tends to shine against opponents of a somewhat lower tier, so I think starting him may be actually the right medicine to get him “back on track.” Want-away midfielder Simon Vukčević scored two goals in Sporting’s UEFA Cup triumph over Basel last year, and Boss Bento has publicly given his support to Vuk Master Flex as far as featuring in this match to hopefully recapture that brace-ariffic magic once again.
Simon Vukčević, Midfielder – See above notes on him being in the lineup.
If I see long balls flying forward after twenty minutes of frustration like I saw in the Benfica loss, I’m going to get on the next plane to Lisbon and fuck someone in a green and white hooped uniform up. Clean, crisp, possession-based passing and taking advantage openings is our formula for victory. Oh, and let’s not let our most favorite type of goal get scored against us: the set piece. Basel have basically said in the press that they’re looking for a point here, so they’ll be defensive and probably park the proverbial bus in the penalty area. Teams that wait back are ASKING for Sporting to build from the back and make effective use of a gifted midfield. If they’re asking for it, please do it. Thanks!
A win here is, as I’ve said, almost necessary at this point. If Shakhtar Donetsk somehow manage to beat Barcelona at home, then a win is DEFINITIVELY necessary… Sporting 2 – 0 FC Basel 1492
Viva O Sporting!!!