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Sporting CP vs Manchester City: UEFA Champions League background, form guide, previous meetings

Sporting CP will be aiming to avoid a repeat of their sole previous round of 16 tie against Manchester City, who have won four successive contests at this stage.

Emiliano Insúa and Mario Balotelli in the 2011/12 UEFA Europa League last 16
Emiliano Insúa and Mario Balotelli in the 2011/12 UEFA Europa League last 16 Corbis via Getty Images

Sporting CP will be aiming to avoid a repeat of their sole previous UEFA Champions League round of 16 tie as they take on a Manchester City team who have won their last four contests at this stage.

• While the Lisbon club have not featured in the competition's knockout rounds since suffering a record defeat by Bayern München in the 2008/09 last 16, City have progressed from the group stage for the ninth season in a row and have become adept at negotiating this hurdle after three defeats in their first four ties.

• City qualified for this contest as Group A winners, recording four victories from their six matches – although two of their three away games ended in defeat – while Sporting finished second in Group C despite losing their first two matches.

• This is one of only two ties in the 2021/22 UEFA Champions League round of 16, along with Salzburg-Bayern München, to involve two reigning domestic champions.

Pedro Gonçalves on Sporting success

Previous meetings

• The teams' only games before this contest came in the 2011/12 UEFA Europa League round of 16, a tie won by Sporting on away goals.

• Xandão's 51st-minute effort gave the home side a 1-0 win in Lisbon on 8 March 2012; a week later, first-half goals from Matías Fernández (33) and Ricky van Wolfswinkel (40) proved enough to take Sporting through despite strikes in the final half-hour from Sergio Agüero (60, 82) either side of Mario Balotelli's 75th-minute penalty.

• Sporting went on to lose 4-3 on aggregate to Athletic Club in the semi-finals.

Sporting vs Man. City: the latest from the match
Highlights: Sporting CP 3-1 Dortmund

Form guide

Sporting CP
• The Lisbon side kicked off Group C with a 5-1 home defeat against Ajax and their prospects looked bleak when they went down 1-0 at Borussia Dortmund on Matchday 2. Two thumping victories against Beşiktaş (4-1 a, 4-0 h) revived their challenge, however, and a 3-1 home win against Dortmund on Matchday 5 sent them through behind Ajax, who prevailed 4-2 against the Portuguese club in the final round of matches.

• This was Sporting's ninth UEFA Champions League group campaign, and a first since 2017/18. That ended with a third-placed finish in their section behind Barcelona and Juventus; they went on to reach the UEFA Europa League quarter-finals.

• The Lisbon club's last three European campaigns have all been in the UEFA Europa League. In 2020/21, they beat Aberdeen 1-0 at home in the one-off third qualifying round before a 4-1 play-off defeat against LASK, also in Lisbon.

• Sporting have won seven of their last nine home European games, although they had conceded nine goals in the two prior to beating Beşiktaş on Matchday 4.

• The Lions have progressed from the group stage for only the second time.

• Sporting's sole previous round of 16 tie, 13 years ago, ended in a 12-1 loss to Bayern (0-5 h, 1-7 a) – the heaviest aggregate defeat in the UEFA Champions League knockout phase.

• Sporting have won all eight of their two-legged knockout ties against English clubs, most recently against City.

• The 2012 win at home to City is Sporting's last success against an English club; their record since is D1 L4, most recently losing 1-0 at home and drawing 0-0 away against Arsenal in the 2018/19 UEFA Europa League group stage.

• The Lions have won nine of their 23 games against English clubs (D4 L10), seven of those victories coming at home although they have lost their last two in Lisbon.

• Sporting have lost all four of their games against Premier League opponents in the UEFA Champions League, against Manchester United in the 2007/08 group stage (0-1 h, 1-2 a) and Chelsea at the same juncture in 2014/15 (0-1 h, 1-3 a).

• Sporting claimed their 19th Portuguese Liga title in 2020/21, and a first since 2001/02. The Lisbon side also won the Portuguese League Cup, their third victory in the competition – all in the last four seasons.

Highlights: Man. City 2-1 Paris

Manchester City
• City collected 12 points in this season's group stage to finish a point clear of Paris Saint-Germain, winning all three home games – and scoring 12 goals in the process. Away from Manchester, however, losses at Paris (0-2) on Matchday 2 and, with first place assured, Leipzig on Matchday 6 (1-2) sandwiched a 5-1 victory at Club Brugge.

• In 2020/21 City ended a run of three successive quarter-final eliminations by going all the way to the UEFA Champions League final only to lose 1-0 to Chelsea at Porto's Estádio do Dragão on 29 May.

• City beat Borussia Mönchengladbach (2-0 a, 2-0 h), Borussia Dortmund (2-1 h, 2-1 a) and Paris (2-1 a, 2-0 h) en route to the final. They had finished first in Group C with 16 points, keeping five clean sheets and conceding only one goal – equalling the UEFA Champions League group stage record.

• City have already conceded ten goals in the 2021/22 UEFA Champions League, five more than in their 13 games in last season's competition, and have yet to keep a clean sheet.

• Champions of England for the seventh time in 2020/21, their third title in four seasons, City also claimed the English League Cup for the fourth season in a row and the eighth overall, equalling Liverpool's competition record.

• This is the Cityzens' 11th UEFA Champions League campaign; they have been involved in the group stage every season since 2011/12 and have now reached the round of 16 in nine successive campaigns.

• Pep Guardiola's team have won 13 of their last 20 away European matches (D3 L4). The last two defeats before the loss in Paris on Matchday 2 had both come in England; the previous away game they had lost abroad was at Shakhtar Donetsk (1-2) on Matchday 6 of the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League.

• City have featured in the round of 16 every season from 2013/14 onwards. Their record at this stage is W5 L3, all five wins after playing the first leg away, all three losses after playing the home leg first. Last season's win against Mönchengladbach was their fourth successive last-16 victory.

• Gabriel Jesus has scored on all five of his appearances at this stage of the UEFA Champions League.

• City have won two of their three two-legged ties against Portuguese opponents.

• The 2012 loss at Sporting is City's sole reverse in their eight fixtures against Portuguese clubs (W5 D2). They took four points off Porto in last season's group stage, winning 3-1 at home on Matchday 1 before a 0-0 away draw on Matchday 5.

• A 2-1 success at Porto in the 2011/12 UEFA Europa League round of 32 first leg – a tie City won 6-1 on aggregate – is the Manchester club's only victory away to Portuguese opponents (D2 L1).

• City's 2019/20 UEFA Champions League campaign ended at Sporting's Estádio José Alvalade, Lyon winning 3-1 in their one-off quarter-final.

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Links and trivia

• Manchester City's Portuguese international trio Rúben Dias, João Cancelo and Bernardo Silva all came through the ranks at Sporting's Lisbon rivals Benfica while Ederson arrived in Europe aged 16 to play for the Eagles' youth teams before making his Liga debut with Rio Ave in August 2012.

• Ederson made his Liga debut for Benfica at the Estádio José Alvalade against Sporting on 5 March 2016 as a replacement for Júlio César, who was injured during the warm-up. Benfica were 1-0 winners, a result that helped them win the title and established Ederson as the first-choice goalkeeper until he left for City in 2017.

• Ederson was sent off as an unused substitute as Benfica lost 2-1 after extra time at Sporting in the Portuguese Cup fourth round on 21 November 2015; Ricardo Esgaio was a late substitute for the Lions.

• Ricardo Esgaio scored past Ederson as Sporting's U19 side beat their Benfica counterparts 3-0 on 27 March 2011.

• Dias scored in Benfica's 4-2 victory away to Sporting at the Estádio José Alvalade on 3 February 2019; Sebastián Coates played for the Green and Whites.

• Dias was sent off in the Benfica B team's 2-1 defeat at Sporting B in the Portuguese second division on 17 April 2016. Cancelo was dismissed for a second bookable offence in Benfica B's 3-1 home defeat by Sporting on 4 November 2012, a match in which he had scored his side's only goal.

• Have played in England:
João Virgínia (Arsenal youth 2015–18, Everton 2018–, Reading 2019/20 loan)
Sebastián Coates (Liverpool 2011–14, Sunderland 2014–16)
Rúben Vinagre (Wolverhampton Wanderers 2017–20)
Pedro Gonçalves (Wolverhampton Wanderers 2017–19)
Islam Slimani (Leicester 2016–18, 2020, Newcastle loan 2018)
Marcus Edwards (Tottenham 2007–19, Norwich loan 2018)

• Have played in Portugal:
Ederson (Benfica 2009–17, Ribeirão 2011/12 loan, Rio Ave 2012–15)
João Cancelo (Barreirense youth 2002–07, Benfica 2007–14)
Rúben Dias (Estrela da Amadora youth 2006–08, Benfica 2008–20)
Bernardo Silva (Benfica 2002–15)

• International team-mates:
João Palhinha, Matheus Nunes, Pedro Gonçalves & João Cancelo, Rúben Dias, Bernardo Silva (Portugal)
Ricardo Esgaio & João Cancelo, Bernardo Silva (Portugal U21)
Ricardo Esgaio & João Cancelo (Portugal U19)
Pablo Sarabia & Aymeric Laporte, Rodri (Spain)

• Kevin De Bruyne started for Belgium in a 1-0 win against holders Portugal in the UEFA EURO 2020 round of 16 on 27 June 2021; João Palhinha played for Portugal and Pedro Gonçalves was an unused substitute.

• İlkay Gündoğan played 73 minutes of Germany's 4-2 win against Portugal in the UEFA EURO 2020 group stage on 19 June 2021; João Palhinha and Pedro Gonçalves were unused Portugal substitutes.

• Nuno Santos missed the final kick as Brazil beat Portugal 3-1 on penalties in the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup quarter-finals after a goalless draw; Gabriel Jesus converted the victors' last spot kick.

Latest news

UEFA Champions League squad changes
In: Islam Slimani (Lyon), Marcus Edwards (Vitória SC)
Out: Jovane Cabral (Lazio, loan), Geny Catamo

• Sporting's record in all competitions since Matchday 6 is W11 D1 L2. They let slip a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 at Portuguese Liga leaders Porto on Friday; captain Sebastián Coates was sent off four minutes into the second half, with Sporting leading 2-1 thanks to goals from Paulinho and Nuno Santos. Substitutes João Palhinha and Bruno Tabata were both dismissed after the final whistle.

• Sporting's last two defeats have come in the Portuguese Liga; those are their only league losses of the season (W17 D3).

• A 3-2 defeat at Santa Clara on 7 January ending Sporting's 11-match league winning run. They have since recorded three victories in five matches (D1 L1).

• A 2-1 loss against Braga on 22 January ended Sporting's 35-match unbeaten home league run, since a 2-0 defeat against Benfica on 17 January 2020; their home record in between those two results was W29 D6.

• The 1-0 defeat at Dortmund on Matchday 2 is the only one of Sporting's 37 games this season in all competitions in which they have failed to score.

• Pedro Gonçalves ended a run of nine games without a goal with the opener in a 2-0 victory at Vizela on 16 January; he also scored in the next game, against Braga, but has drawn a blank in his last four, although he missed Friday's game against Porto at the weekend having limped off with a muscular problem in the second half of a 2-0 win against Famalicão on 6 February.

• On 29 January, holders Sporting came from behind to beat Lisbon rivals Benfica 2-1 in the final and retain the Portuguese League Cup thanks to goals from Gonçalo Inácio and Pablo Sarabia. It was the club's fourth victory in the competition, all in the last five years, and a third title as coach for Rúben Amorim – his second with Sporting to add to the one he won with Braga – who has won all nine of his matches in the competition.

• Marcus Edwards, who joined Sporting from Vitória SC in January, made his debut as a second-half substitute in a 4-1 Liga win at Belenenses on 2 February.

• Sporting scored for the 37th successive home game in all competitions in that 2-0 league victory against Famalicão. The last time they drew a blank at the Estadio José Alvalade was a 0-0 Liga draw with Vitória FC on 21 July 2020.

• Sarabia opened the scoring against Famalicão with a penalty, finding the net for the fourth successive match in all competitions, before Matheus Reis scored his first goal for the club on his 45th appearance.

• Islam Slimani, who returned to Sporting from Lyon in January, made his second debut for the Lions as a second-half substitute against Famalicão. It was his first Sporting appearance since he left for Leicester in August 2016.

• Sporting will face Porto in the Portuguese Cup semi-finals after winning away to lower-league sides Casa Pia on 22 December (2-1) and Leça on 11 January (4-0). The home first leg against Porto will be held on 2 March, with the return on 20 April.

• João Palhinha (2026) and Luís Neto (2023) signed new contracts in December.

• Sporting full-back Gonçalo Esteves became, aged 17 years 283 days, the youngest Portuguese player to start a UEFA Champions League match at Ajax on Matchday 6; the record was quickly supplanted by Dário Essugo, who came on as a late substitute aged 16 years 268 days.

Manchester City
UEFA Champions League squad changes
In: Kayky
Out: Ferran Torres (Barcelona)

• City have won 11 of their 12 games in all competitions since Matchday 6, the exception a 1-1 draw at Southampton in the Premier League on 22 January. On Saturday they were 4-0 victors at Norwich, Raheem Sterling scoring a hat-trick to make it eight goals in his last nine Premier League appearances – though they were his first goals of 2022.

• That draw at Southampton is the only one of City's last 15 league matches they have failed to win, and ended a 12-game winning Premier League streak.

• The Matchday 6 defeat at Leipzig is City's only loss in their last 20 games in all competitions (W18 D1).

• Pep Guardiola's side have scored 37 goals in their last 12 games, conceding seven.

• The draw at Southampton was Guardiola's 500th point in the Premier League, in his 213th game in charge, beating José Mourinho's previous record of 231 matches.

• Phil Foden's opener in City's 7-0 home win against Leeds on 14 December was City's 500th Premier League goal under Guardiola, in his 207th match at an average of 2.4 goals per game.

• City won 36 league games in 2021, an English top-flight record; the previous best of 33 was set by Liverpool in 1982. Nineteen of those victories came away from home, another top-flight best.

• City have reached the fifth round of the FA Cup with 4-1 wins at Swindon and at home to Fulham.

• The Cityzens will visit Championship side Peterborough in the last 16 in the week starting 28 February.

• Gabriel Jesus has missed City's last three games with a muscular injury.

• Cole Palmer has not played since scoring in City's win at Swindon on 7 January.

• City signed Julián Álvarez from River Plate in January, although the 22-year-old forward has been loaned back to the Argentinian club for the rest of the season.

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