Teams: SPORTING CP & Portugal NT
In this stage one can only be good!
Transl. from A Bola
It is not decisive, but it's close to that. And in one point the Lions are right: winning in Germany, Sporting will be in excellent conditions to pass through to the 1/8 finals. How to do it?, might have asked himself Paulo Bento during the last days. With two explosive and irreverent youngsters coming back to the first XI, for example? That is a strong possibility. But whoever plays, should understand the greatness of the stage where they will be! At the Arena of Munich it seems impossible not to be good.
Marco Caneira, Custódio, Nani and Yannick Djaló seem to have the ticket assured for Sporting's first XI, after having sat on the bench on Friday, in Aveiro. The defender is the incarnation of experience, the captain synonym of solidity, the other two seem to be designed to shuffle the defensive characteristics of the superpowerful Bayern, a team with a tendency for some stiffness of movements, as it explained two days ago to A Bola a Portuguese expert on the analysis of the measurable aspects of the game.
Paulo Bento has made of rotation his trade mark. And he has been showing some originality in the construction of his teams, as well. Taking a bet, we preview that Caneira will be the right full back and Tello will stay on the left. In the midfield, to balance the squad, Custódio will return and Paredes will shift to the right side, where he faced FC Porto. Moutinho will be on the left and Nani on the upper vortex of the diamond. Yannick, with his "hot foot", will appear side by side with Liedson.
The time runs fast in this stay of the Lion in Munich. Arrived in the beginning of yesterday's afternoon, after a quiet trip from Lisbon with a charter flight that was delayed half an hour, the green and whites trained in the evening. Today they rest, eat...and play. Meanwhile, the main non-footballing faces of the group (Soares Franco, Ribeiro Teles, Carlos Freitas, Salema Garção and Maurício do Vale) will have lunch Bayern's Board.
Sporting, through the voice of its communication director, Salema Garção, left "a word of praise to the Portuguese emigrants, that have been transmiting messages of great support". It is not known if they will appear in a big number at the Arena where it is impossible to play badly. From Lisbon travelled around 100 supporters (amongst them one benfiquista). They will be few, but if the talent goes lose who knows if they will not be heard later tonight in Bavaria?
"The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”