Sporting vs Midtjylland – Analysis, Prediction, Team News
Thursday 16th February 2023
Estádio José Alvalade
As part of our Europa League predictions, we preview Midtjylland’s visit to Lisbon. Midtjylland haven’t played competitive football since November and aren’t great travellers – home win? Read on with our Sporting vs Midtjylland prediction.
Sporting (Champions League)
Sporting vs Midtjylland Match Preview
After an excellent start to their Champions League campaign this season, Sporting will be disappointed to find themselves dropping to the Europa League playoff round after losing their crunch home tie against Frankfurt 2-1 after being 1-0 up. Their capitulation saw them earn one point from their final four group games following an excellent start which included a 2-0 home victory over Spurs and a 3-0 win in Frankfurt. Back-to-back defeats against a Marseille side who finished bottom of the group were arguably the decisive factor.
Domestically, Sporting have been similarly inconsistent, which is why they find themselves 15 points behind leaders FC Porto and even eight points behind third-placed Braga. To illustrate the point, their recent league form had taken a sharp upturn, with a 2-2 draw away to Lisbon rivals Benfica followed by an impressive 5-0 rout of Braga. Typically, this period of improved domestic form has been interspersed with two disappointing home defeats to FC Porto in the last four games, 2-1 in the Portuguese Cup and 2-0 at home in the league in their last match.
Midtjylland’s Europa League campaign was full of twists, turns and perhaps unexpected high points which meant they were able to qualify in second place with eight points. In the end, Europa League Group F was so tight that all four teams finished with eight points and were duly separated by goal difference with group favourites Lazio missing out altogether. Feyenoord avoid the Europa League playoff in Midtjylland’s stead by virtue of having scored one more goal than the Danes after finishing with an equal +4 goal difference.
We can’t analyse Midtjylland’s recent domestic form owing to the extended World Cup and winter break in the Danish football calendar. Before the break, Midtjylland endured a highly disappointing campaign, perhaps as the result of a small squad unsuited to the demands of multiple competitions. Whatever the underlying reason, they’ve only managed to win five of 17 league games thus far, and could, somewhat implausibly, finish in the bottom half of the table before the Championship group commences which would see them without the possibility of attaining European football next season as Viborg knocked them out of the domestic cup before the break.
Injuries and Suspensions
Might Not Play: Essugo, Morita
Will Not Play: Braganca
Might Not Play:
Will Not Play: Sviatchenko
Sporting vs Midtjylland Lineups (Predicted)
Sporting (3-4-3): Adan; Mattheus Reis, Coates, Goncalo Inacio; Aguilar, Ugarte, Pedro Goncalves, Bellerin; Trincao, Edwards, Chermiti
Midtjylland (4-3-3): Lossl; Paulinho, Gartenmann, Dalsgaard, Andersson; Martinez, Gimenez, Olsson; Andreasen, Isaksen, Heiselberg
While Midtjylland have worked miracles to get to this stage, including an unforgettable 5-1 hammering of Lazio away from home, we think the party stops here. Domestically, they’ve been poor by any standards, and Sporting have produced their own highlights this year despite their ultimate disappointment of dropping to the Europa League playoff.
Sporting will be up against a side that enjoys playing an open game, and while we’re not suggesting that the Danes were lucky in reaching this stage, we do expect a regression to the mean and for Sporting to allow their superior quality to tell. Sporting themselves are somewhat open and can’t be relied upon for a clean sheet so we’re anticipating an entertaining, high-scoring game that ultimately will favour the Portuguese side.
Sporting 3-1 Midtjylland
Sporting vs Midtjylland Betting Tip – Over 2.5 Goals Odds:
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