Sporting Clube de Portugal have never fared well against German opposition so must make home advantage tell against FC Bayern München who possess a near-flawless record against Portuguese sides.
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Sporting Clube de Portugal have to reverse the tide of history if they are to overcome FC Bayern München and progress to the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals for the first time. In 14 games against opponents from Germany they have still to register a victory.
• Moreover, Bayern's record in UEFA club competition against teams from Portugal is equally daunting for Sporting: in 20 games the Bundesliga champions have only tasted defeat on one occasion and that came in the 1986/87 European Champion Clubs' Cup final.
• Sporting will consider it a triumph to have got this far – in their four previous campaigns they had never progressed from the group phase – but will not want to rest on their laurels. At home in Group C they won their first two games, against FC Basel 1893 and FC Shakhtar Donetsk, and then suffered a 5-2 defeat at the Estádio José Alvalade against FC Barcelona, who finished one point ahead of them in first place. The Lisbon club replicated those results away from home, winning against Shakhtar and Basel but losing in Barcelona.
• As they bid to match their club's achievement of 1982/83 when they reached the European Cup quarter-finals, Paulo Bento's side will have to improve on their previous results against German visitors. In seven home games they have drawn four and lost three and in this competition the statistics are even more foreboding. Of the four previous visits by German clubs to face Sporting in Lisbon in the European Cup, only the 0-0 draw with Bayer 04 Leverkusen in the 2000/01 first group stage prevents a clean sweep of home defeats.
• Of those reverses, the last came at the hands of Bayern. It came in the 2006/07 group stage as the Munich club won 1-0 at the Estádio José Alvalade with Bastian Schweinsteiger's 19th-minute goal proving the difference. The German international later blotted his copybook by getting sent off.
• The lineups for the match on 18 October 2006 were:
Sporting: Ricardo, Anderson Polga, Carlos Martins (Yannick Djaló), Rodrigo Tello, Marco Caneira, Tonel, Nani, Alecsandro (Carlos Bueno), Miguel Veloso (Carlos Paredes), João Moutinho, Liedson.
Bayern: Oliver Kahn, Willy Sagnol, Lucio, Daniel Van Buyten, Lukas Podolski (Julio dos Santos), Claudio Pizarro, Mark van Bommel, Philipp Lahm, Roque Santa Cruz (Hasan Salihamidžić), Bastian Schweinsteiger, Andreas Ottl (Martín Demichelis).
• The return game in Munich ended 0-0 and since then Bayern have added to their tally of favourable results against Portuguese opposition with two wins and a draw. Their record is now: P20 W11 D8 L1.
• In Portugal, Bayern's record shows four wins and six draws in ten visits. They made two journeys there in last season's UEFA Cup, winning 2-0 at CF Os Belenenses to complete a 3-0 aggregate victory in the first round – Luca Toni and Hamit Altıntop scored in the away leg and Toni in Germany. Bayern then drew 1-1 away to SC Braga in the group stage with Miroslav Klose on the scoresheet. In home-and-away combat Bayern have always come out on top in aggregate terms with their superiority being made to count back on home soil, scoring 24 goals in nine games. The fixture Bayern will not want to recall was the 1986/87 European Cup final when they lost 2-1 to FC Porto in Vienna.
• When Bayern missed out on last year's tournament, it broke a run of ten successive campaigns. During that sequence, they lifted the trophy in 2001 having finished as runners-up two years earlier. They also managed to qualify for the knockout rounds in four straight seasons between 2003/04 and 2006/07.
• This time round Jürgen Klinsmann's Bayern were unbeaten in Group F with four wins and two draws and a 3-2 win at Olympique Lyonnais on Matchday 6 enabled them to finish with a three-point advantage at the top. They also won away against FC Steaua Bucureşti and drew at ACF Fiorentina. At home they picked up a point against Lyon and won the other two fixtures 3-0.
• Klinsmann scored for FC Internazionale Milano in their 2-0 semi-final second leg victory at home to Sporting en route to winning the 1990/91 UEFA Cup. The Lisbon leg had finished goalless. Klinsmann – scoring a record 15 goals in the process – also lifted the trophy in 1995/96 with Bayern. In the third round that season they beat SL Benfica, the striker scoring all the goals in a 4-1 home win. In Lisbon, Klinsmann struck twice in Bayern's 3-1 victory.
• João Moutinho and Hélder Postiga played for Portugal in a 3-2 defeat by Germany in the UEFA EURO 2008™ quarter-finals in Basel. In the opposing side were Philipp Lahm, Tim Borowski, Schweinsteiger, Klose and Lukas Podolski. Moutinho also encountered Altıntop in Portugal's 2-0 defeat of Turkey in Group A.
• Postiga appeared as a second-half substitute as Portugal lost to France in the 2006 FIFA World Cup semi-final. Franck Ribéry was on the opposite side.
• The second leg is at the Fußball Arena München on 10 March.