After an historic debut in the UEFA Champions League, Leicester City is looking forward to the second round, in which they are host one of the most popular Portuguese teams – Porto FC. The Leicester City boss Claudio Ranieri was delighted after the first round comfortable 3-0 away win against Club Brugge, but he is aware that the match against Porto, who is a regular Champions League contestant, is going to be much different, especially after Porto failed to win all 3 points at home against FC Copenhagen in the opening round.
Coming off a great season last year, in which the surprised the sports World by winning the English Premier league title, Leicester has become a reputable contestant in all competitions this season. Their home record is more than impressive, considering that they have lost only two times in the last 20 home games (2:4 to Chelsea in the League Cup and 1:2 to Manchester United in the FA Community Shield). The Foxes lost to the Blues after jumping to a quick 2:0 lead in the first half of the English league Cup. However, Chelsea managed to level the score, taking the game into overtime. Before Wasilewski earned a red card, Leicester City was controlling the game, but with one man short on the pitch, Chelsea had more space to operate, scoring two goals in the overtime and qualifying for the next round with a 4:2 win. Claudio Ranieri’s decision to leave Vardy and Mahrez on the bench, indicates that he wants to rest them for the upcoming matches against Manchester United in the EPL and Porto in the ECL.
On the other side, Porto has not started off the season as they were expecting. The 2004 UEFA Champions winner has started its 21st group stage participation with a poor performance against the Danish champions FC Copenhagen at home. Although Otavio brought his team upfront with a lovely strike from just outside the box in the 13th minute, Porto has not showed too much after that. On the other side, the Danish team managed to level the score at the beginning of the second half, as Andreas Cornelius scored in the 52nd minute. With the scored leveled, Porto took the control of the ball, forcing the Danish team to pull back on their side of the pitch, waiting for their opportunity through quick counter attacks. After Jan Gregus saw his second yellow card and left his team with one man short, Porto tried to push forward and create some scoring opportunities, but failed to capitalize the men advantage and the match ended with a draw 1:1. Porto has also dissapointed against the last placed Tondela in the Portuguese Primeira league (0:0), which only shows poor form of the team going into second round clash against Leicester City.
Important to note is that both teams should have their key players available for this match, as the Foxes starting goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel is expected to play against Manchester United after suffering a concussion during a practice prior the match against Burnley.
LEICESTER CITY: Schmeichel – Hernandez, Morgan, Huth, Fuchs – Mahrez, Drinkwater, Amartey, Albrighton – Vardy, Slimani
PORTO FC: Casillas, Telles, Marcano, Felipe, Layun – Torres, Pereira, Herrera – Otavinho, Corona, Silva
Both teams are entering this match with the pressure to record a win. Leicestes City, after suffering a loss at home to Chelsea, will look to continue their Champions League winning streak, while on the other side, Porto FC knows that they cannot afford to lose this game, after a slip in the first round. However, considering the Foxes home record, they might be a slight favorite to win this match. The fans should see at least 3 goals.
The match is played on Tuesday, 27.09.2016. 20:45 CET at the King Power Stadium.