SPORTING 2-0 Legia Warszawa

Sporting had a comfortable night in the Alvalade against Legia Warszawa. Bryan Ruiz and Bas Dost’s first half goals were enough to seal the win.

Sporting were without Jorge Jesus after his sending off against Real Madrid last time out. Assistant coach Raul José was the main man at the dug out in his place.

The Polish side themselves have just gone under a chance of management and in the first 10 minutes they looked hugely improved over the time that were thrashed by Borussia Dortmund in their first round game.

However, Sporting soon grew in confidence and dominated the rest of the second half.

Gelson Martins had a golden opportunity when a corner fell his way. The ball was coming at him quick but Gelson was just a few years in front of an open goal when his shot cannoned off the cross bar.

The first goal came from a corner in the 28th minute that was flicked on by a Legia player but it went straight to the feet of Bryan Ruiz. The Costa Rican calmly passed the ball into the net.

Sporting got the second when a pinpoint Adrien Silva pass found Bas Dost who peeled away from his marker. The Dutch striker made no mistake in boosting his excellent scoring record so far this season.

The game after the break was completely different. Sporting didn’t put too much effort into looking of a third goal where as Legia didn’t look threatening going forward. It’s the kind of half that could have done with Jorge Jesus screaming manically from the sidelines.

The second half did see the debut of Serbian midfielder Radosav Petrović as a late substitution but that is as interesting as it got.

Still, it’s 3 important points with these 2 games against Legia must wins for Sporting.

SPORTING XI: Rui Patrício; João Pereira, Sebastián Coates, Rúben Semedo, Jefferson; William Carvalho, Adrien Silva, Bruno César (Lazar Marković, 66′), Gelson Martins (Joel Campbell, 76′); Bryan Ruiz (Scored, 28′) (Radosav Petrović, 87′), Bas Dost (Scored, 37′)
Substitutes Not Used: Beto, Ezequiel Schelotto, Paulo Oliveira, André

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Champions League Draw, Douglas, André

There’s plenty of big news to catch up on with the Champions League draw, the signings of Douglas and André, the departure of Alberto Aquilani, and the usual transfer rumours.

Firstly, we’ll look at the Champions League draw. It’s a very tough group for Sporting but does involve the return of a familiar face to the Alvalade. Here are the full Champions League fixtures:

14th September: Real Madrid vs. SPORTING
27th September: SPORTING vs. Legia Warszawa
18th October: SPORTING vs. Borussia Dortmund
2nd November: Borussia Dortmund vs. SPORTING
22nd November: SPORTING vs. Real Madrid
7th December: Legia Warszawa vs. SPORTING

It’s looking like 3rd place is going to be the most likely outcome of that group but the return of Cristiano Ronaldo should be a great moment.

Madrid, Dortmund and Legia will also be the opponents for Sporting’s U19 side as Sporting return to the UEFA Youth League.

Yesterday Sporting also completed the long expected transfer of Douglas Teixeira from Trabzonspor. The Brazilian turned Dutch central defender has a 3-year contract with the option of an extra year.

No word of a transfer fee but the 28-year old is going to find it difficult to get in the team ahead of Rúben Semedo and Sebastián Coates. This is should accelerate the departures of Naldo, rumoured to be joining Krasnodar on loan shortly, and Ewerton.

The departure of Alberto Aquilani has finally concluded. The Italian midfielder rescinded his contract and has joined Pescara.

Before that, on Wednesday evening there was the signing of Brazilian forward André from Corinthians. Apparently, Sporting have used some of the debt owed the club by Corinthians (back from the transfer of Elias) as part of the transfer fee but no official word on the value.

André signs a contract until 2019 with an option of 2 more seasons and a release clause of €60,000,000.

According to O Jogo, Sporting want to give a new contract to Gelson Martins. Martins currently has a contract until 2021, however Sporting want to increase the player’s wages as well extend the length of the contract.

A Bola say that there are Primeira Liga clubs looking to sign Daniel Podence on loan, with Sporting willing to allow the player to gain experience elsewhere.

Finally, the rumours of the signing of Bas Dost have returned. If you believe all the rumours then Sporting have competition from some English sides however should Sporting sign the Wolfsburg man it is likely it could lead to the exit of Islam Slimani.

Match Report: SPORTING 1-0 Legia Warszawa (3-2 agg.)

Sporting qualified to the Last 16 of the UEFA Europa League with a 1-0 win on the night over Legia Warszawa and 3-2 on aggregate due to Matías Fernández’s late freekick.

Ricardo Sá Pinto brought in Alberto Rodríguez in the place of the injured Oguchi Onyewu, Daniel Carriço took Fabián Rinaudo’s role and Matías Fernández replaced the cup-tied Elias.

The first half was an even contest devoid of much action. Legia failed to create chances against the Sporting defence and the game because a midfield battle. The first half finished with little of note to talk about and with chances in the game few and far between.

The second half had some more action, albeit mostly from Russian referee Vladislav Bezborodov, who handed out 8 yellow cards in that second period with 11 in the game in total. Most of those going to the tough-tackling away side.

Sporting though did get their goal after 83 minutes when Matías Fernández’s freekick went past everyone and into Dušan Kuciak’s goal.

It wasn’t the most exciting game but Sporting progress to face Manchester City (who knocked out Porto) in the next round with games to be played on the 8th and 15th March.

There will be concern for Sporting though, the three substitutions made by Ricardo Sá Pinto were all forced changed due to injury. Marat Izmailov and André Carrillo’s does not look to serious but Alberto Rodríguez will go under further assessment before it can be determined when he will return.

SPORTING XI: Rui Patrício; João Pereira (YC), Ânderson Polga, Alberto Rodríguez (Xandão 71′), Emiliano Insúa; Daniel Carriço (YC), Stijn Schaars (YC), Matías Fernández; Marat Izmailov (Bruno Pereirinha 77′), André Carrillo (YC) (Diego Capel 70′, YC), Ricky van Wolfswinkel
Subs Not Used: Marcelo Boeck, Renato Neto, André Santos, Sebastián Ribas

UEFA Europa League Draw: Legia Warszawa

Today’s Europa League draw has Sporting Clube de Portugal drawn against Legia Warszawa of Poland in the round of 32 before a possible fixture against Porto or Manchester City in the last 16.

Sporting will travel to Warsaw for the first leg on the 16th February before the second leg at home on the 23rd February. The fixture will be the first ever competitive meeting between the two clubs, indeed it will be the first time Sporting play in Poland.

Should Sporting progress then they will face the winner of the game between 2011 Europa League winners Porto and the well-monied Manchester City. Those two possible games would be played on the 8th and 15th March.

Full list of fixtures can be found on the Results / Fixtures page