Porto vs Schalke
Competition: UEFA Champions League
Date: 28 November 2018
Kick-off: 21:00 CET
This is Porto’s chance not just to secure their spot in the last-16 of the competition mathematically, but also to guarantee themselves the top spot in the group. They are on 10 points, two more than second-placed Schalke, with whom they have drawn 1-1 in Germany, the only group match they didn’t manage to win up to now. It two weeks they will be traveling to Galatasaray, while Schalke will be hosting Lokomotiv Moscow, so their best chance to secure the top spot is now. Casillas, Maxi, Felipe, Militão, Alex Telles, Herrera, Danilo, Óliver, Brahimi, Otávio and Marega, these should be the first 11 for Porto. Center-forward Vincent Aboubakar is out due to a knee injury. Last weekend they beat Belenenses 2-0 at home in a Portugal Cup match. They now have eight wins in a row, in three competitions.
Schalke may be just 14th in the Bundesliga, but they are super close to securing a spot in the last-16 of the Champions League. Eight points from four matches have them second in the table, two behind leaders Porto, and four ahead of third-placed Galatasaray. Mathematically, they need two more points to secure a spot in the top-2, but if Galatasaray don’t beat Lokomotiv in Moscow, even a defeat in Portugal won’t be a… disaster for the German side, which will still qualify, mathematically. They are expected to start with Fährmann, Stambouli, Naldo, Nastasić, Caligiuri, Mascarell, Schöpf, Bentaleb, Harit, Burgstaller and Skrzybski. Center-forwards Breel Embolo, Cedric Teuchert and Mark Uth, are out, all three injured. Central midfielder Weston McKennie is doubtful. Last weekend, Schalke scored five(!) goals past Nurnberg at home (5-2).
Previous five matches:
Porto vs Belenenses 2-0
Porto vs Braga 1-0
Porto vs Lokomotiv Moscow 4-1
Marítimo vs Porto 0-2
Porto vs Varzim 4-2
Schalke vs Nurnberg 5-2
Eintracht Frankfurt vs Schalke 3-0
Schalke vs Galatasaray 2-0
Schalke vs Hannover 3-1
FC Koln vs Schalke 1-1
Porto’s next game is at Boavista, on Sunday (Portugal championship). Schalke are visiting Hoffenheim on Saturday (Germany Bundesliga).
Porto vs Schalke: Head to head Stats
Porto have hosted Schalke twice before; they drew 2-2 in 1976, and beat them 1-0 in 2008 (no matter if they lost on penalties that day).
Porto vs Schalke: Prediction
I trust Porto to win. Schalke are very unpredictable, capable of the best and the worst, but in this case, they are visiting a better team.
Porto vs Schalke: Betting Tips
Porto’s win is at 1.83. “Over 2.5 goals” pays 2.10. These two combined, promise a much better 3.00.