Preview: Sporting v Chelsea

"We have our weapons," said Sporting Clube de Portugal boss Marco Silva ahead of the game with Chelsea FC, who will start with Diego Costa in attack, said José Mourinho.

José Mourinho confirmed Diego Costa will start for Chelsea
José Mourinho confirmed Diego Costa will start for Chelsea ©Getty Images

Marco Silva picks Nani as Sporting's key man after matchday one goal 
Coach hopeful for points if his side play to potential
• Chelsea's José Mourinho confirms Diego Costa will start in Lisbon
Blues manager expects both teams to play for the win
Ankle injury rules out Didier Drogba

Possible lineups
Sporting: Rui Patrício; Cédric, Maurício, Sarr, Jonathan Silva; William, Adrien, João Mário; Carrillo, Nani, Slimani.
Out: Rabia (abdomen)

Chelsea: Čech; Ivanović, Terry, Cahill, Luis; Matić, Fàbregas; Willian, Oscar, Hazard; Costa.
Out: Ramires (groin), Drogba (ankle)

Marco Silva, Sporting coach
It is our debut in front of our fans and I am happier because of it – it will be a great atmosphere with the fans helping us a lot. Chelsea are favourites, not only to win the group but also to be in the final together with four or five others. It will be a match with a very high level of difficulty but with our quality and the right attitude we can challenge for the points here.

Nani opted to come back to the club where he grew up, where he became a man together with his family and loved ones, so his return could only be perfect. We can see that the team are growing not only with him on the pitch, but we see the confidence that he brings, his quality.

Chelsea will play with their best men and may of course make one change or another. They are a very strong team at all times during the game. They got stronger this season to try and win the Premier League and also the Champions League. We are facing a very strong opponent. It will be a challenge for Sporting. It is a big boost for the club and the fans to play at home against such a big club, one that has a Portuguese coach. But we will not change our identity because of it. We have our weapons.

José Mourinho, Chelsea manager
I don't know what favourite means in football. For us a good result is winning. We will try to win – one thing is wanting to win, another is achieving it. Benfica and Porto couldn't do it [beat Sporting]. Sporting have their strengths and motivations and maybe they think that a draw is good for them. One thing is thinking this, another is playing for it.

If we see them play the way they played Porto on Friday and we are also here to win, we will have a great match that will last in people's memory and celebrate the return of Sporting to the UEFA Champions League. I only feel pride [about the time spent at Sporting as assistant to Sir Bobby Robson]. I did everything here. I only have good memories of Sporting and it was the beginning of my career. It was great.

It has been almost ten years without playing here against a Portuguese team, but for me it won't be a different match. I try to isolate myself from the emotional aspects. If I had to choose I would pick Chelsea first in our group and Sporting in second. Diego Costa will start tomorrow. Didier Drogba will be out a few weeks because of an ankle injury. Although he [Costa] may get injured, he will play. I hope he may be fit enough to play against Arsenal. I will have quality options on the bench to replace him or to change the course of the game if needed.

Weekend results
Sporting 1-1 FC Porto (Silva 2; Sarr og 56)
Chelsea 3-0 Aston Villa FC (Oscar 7, Diego Costa 59, Willian 79)

Form guide (all competitions)
Sporting: DWDDDW
Chelsea: WWDDWW

Match facts
• What is Sporting's home record against English opposition? Find out in our extensive match background.

Top