Kick off: Wednesday, August 17, 7:45 GMT
Venue: Estadio do Dragao (Porto)
Head to head record
No past meetings
Porto vs Roma prediction
There will be fireworks when Porto and Roma square off against each other at Estadio Do Dragao on 17 August, 2016 in the Champions League play-offs, first leg. Both sides participated in the Champions League last season and it remains to be seen who will play against top European sides in the 2016/2017 campaign.
Plenty of experience
Over the years Porto have established themselves as one of the dominant forces in Portuguese football. The Dragons have been playing regularly in the Champions League in the 21st century and they certainly want to retain their spot in the group stages of the elite competition. Porto kicked off the new Primeira Liga campaign with a 3-1 win over Rio Ave and they will be looking to build on the triumph when they host Roma at their Estadio do Dragao in the Champions League play-offs on Wednesday evening. Coach Nuno Espirito Santo did well to keep hold of his star players and the Portuguese side are definitely capable of beating Roma in the upcoming two-legged tie. Algeria international Brahimi is likely to start the match and the pacey winger should pose a big threat for the opposition defenders. It has to be noted that Porto suffered only one loss in previous ten home games in the Champions League.
Laurent Depoitre is definitely out of contention, but coach Nuno Espirito Santo has no other selection worries ahead of the visit of Roma. The Portuguese tactician is likely to stick to the 4-3-3 formation.
Difficult task for Roma
Roma finished the 2015/2016 Serie A campaign in third place in the standings and, as a result, the Giallorossi booked their place in the Champions League play-offs. The Romans, though, have not been handed an easy draw as they face Porto in the double-header. The capital club head into Wednesday’s game against Porto following five consecutive wins in pre-season and, no doubt, they are full of confidence ahead of the trip to Portugal. Roma did well to beat the likes of Liverpool in a friendly earlier in August and it seems as if Miralem Pjanic is not going to be sorely missed in the 2016/2017 season. The club legend Francesco Totti has yet to retire, but the most important thing for the Giallorossi is that Mohamed Salah did not leave the club in the summer transfer window. The pacey attacker impressed last season and the opposition defenders will find it hard to contain the Egyptian star in Wednesday’s Champions League clash at Estadio do Dragao.
Coach Luciano Spalletti has a full squad to choose from and he is likely to field the best possible side against Porto. New signing Thomas Vermaelen is likely to start the match.
- Roma managed to keep a clean sheet in previous two friendly games
- Porto recorded four wins in previous five home games in the Champions League
- Roma registered 10 wins in last 11 games in all competitions
- Roma and Porto meet for the first time ever in European competitions
- Dragons scored 2+ goals in four of their last five home fixtures in the CL
Porto vs Roma betting pick
Porto and Roma face each other in the Champions League play-offs in what is expected to be the most entertaining clash of Wednesday’s program. Given the attacking potential of the two teams, there is every chance we will see a lively contest in Portugal. Both coaches can count on their key attackers for the first leg and, taking everything into account, I am tempted to put my money on both teams to score.
Pick: Both teams to score