Sporting Lisbon v NK Maribor: Preview

PA Sport
November 24, 2014

Marco Silva is hoping Sporting can continue their unbeaten run with a result in Tuesday night's Champions League Group G clash at Estadio Jose Alvalade.

Silva's Portuguese giants are looking for a victory from their tie with Maribor to claim a spot in the top two ahead of next month's final group fixtures.

Sporting host their Slovenian opponents on the back of Friday night's 5-0 thrashing of Espinho in the Portuguese Cup as they currently enjoy a three-match unbeaten run.

Teenager Daniel Podence, who made his debut during that cup triumph was delighted with the result and hopes to feature again, although he is currently on the club's player list B.

He told his club's official website ``It is a dream come true. I have been at the club for nine or 10 years and I was never expecting this. I am really proud and now I have to carry on working hard to get called into the squad.''

Junya Tanaka, who scored his first goal for the club from the penalty spot on Friday, may make his Champions League debut for Sporting, while Mauricio is available for the home side after serving a one-game suspension on matchday four.

Maribor are also in confident mood after recording a 4-0 triumph over Koper in the Slovenian PrvaLiga this weekend and hope to move off the bottom of the table.

The contest between the two sides at Ljudski vrt in September ended 1-1 and since then Sporting, who sit third in the Group G table, have suffered defeats to leaders Chelsea and Schalke, and then beat the latter at home earlier this month, while Maribor are one point further back after two further 1-1 draws and a 6-0 loss at Chelsea.

Tavares (adductor) and Agim Ibraimi (pneumonia) were struggling with fitness last week for the away side but both recovered to feature on Saturday against Koper and could keep their places in head coach Ante Simundza's squad.


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