Our prediction for this Europa League match:
Atletico Madrid will be looking to defend their two-goal lead in the Europa League tie against Sporting CP when the two teams face each other at Estadio Jose Alvalade. Los Rojiblancos recorded a routine 2-0 win over the Portuguese side in the first leg and, no doubt, Diego Simeone's troops are going to rely on their rock-solid defence in Thursday's football match. Atletico Madrid did well to hold Real Madrid to a 1-1 draw in the local derby at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu at the weekend, meaning that they are full of confidence ahead of the trip to Lisbon. Sporting CP are tough to beat at home, but seeing that the La Liga side have been in a splendid form in 2018, we do not believe the hosts are capable of upsetting Diego Simeone's charges. Bas Dost, who helped the Lions recorded a 2-0 win over Pacos Ferreira at the weekend, will be the man to watch in the home team.
Highlighted Player (Rui Patricio):
Sporting Lisbon and Portugal national team goalkeeper Rui Patricio is a one-club man. He was reportedly close to signing with Serie A giants Inter Milan during the 2008 of-season, but he remained in his club where he will most likely hang up his boots when the time comes. The 28-year-old shot stopper spent most of his career with the Lions making his debut with the first-team at only 18 years of age.
Rui Patricio went on to appear in more than 350 official games for the Portugal greats and remains the first-choice keeper for his club and country. Having gone through all the youth selections with the national team, Rui Patricio was given his first senior cap in 2010 after Paulo Bento’s appointment.
Rui Patricio represented his national team at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and three European Championships. The 28-year-old was the mainstay in Portugal’s historic Euro 2016 title in France.
Highlighted Team (Atletico Madrid):
Atletico Madrid are a Spanish team that plays in Primera Division (La Liga). Los Rojiblancos or los Colchoneros play their home matches at Estadio Vicente Calderon, which holds up to 54,960 spectators. Atletico Madrid have won 10 La Liga titles, but they have yet to lift the European Cup (Champions League) trophy.
Los Rojiblancos have won 10 Copa del Rey (Spanish Cup) trophies and it has to be noted that they defeated their bitter local rivals Real Madrid in the 2012/2013 Spanish Cup final. The rivalry between the two capital clubs is pretty big and El Madrileno is regarded as one of the most exciting derbies in the world football.
Atletico Madrid played two Champions League finals under Diego Simeone, but they failed to beat Real Madrid in the title games (2013/2014 and 2015/2016). However, the Argentine tactician helped Atletico Madrid win the La Liga trophy in 2014 and, no doubt, he is one of the most successful coaches in the history of the capital club.