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Arsenal vs Sporting CP Preview for second encounter: Predictions, Team News & Lineups, Form



Both sides had an entertaining first leg last time out in Lisbon, with the Gunners coming from behind in the second half to draw 2-2. Thus, the draw to Thursday’s second leg is balanced.

The Premier League leaders purred against Fulham at the weekend and are set to triumph at home against the Portuguese. However, Sporting underlined their credentials last time out and a rotating Arsenal side could be vulnerable to an upset at the Emirates as Mikel Arteta is unlikely to reach full strength.

Arsenal vs Sporting CP Preview: Predictions, Team News & Lineups

Here’s our preview of Arsenal’s Europa League round of 16 second leg against Sporting CP. How to watch Sporting CP v Arsenal on TV

Where is the kick off? Thursday March 16

When is the kick off? 8:00 p.m. (CET)

Where is the game played? Emirates Stadium. TV channel/live stream? BT Sport 2 (UK), DAZN (Canada), Paramount+ (US)

Arsenal team news

Gabriel Jesus returned to action on Sunday after three months and is struggling to start on Thursday with Eddie Nketiah still absent. However, Leandro Trossard is likely to come out on top, with Reiss Nelson and possibly Fabio Vieira joining him in the top three.
Bukayo Saka should be rested.

Emile Smith Rowe could earn his first start of the season in midfield, while Jorginho will replace Thomas Partey in basic midfield. Kieran Tierney is expected to come on at left-back after missing the first leg with illness, and it would come as no surprise if Arteta replaces the centre-back with Rob Holding and Gabriel possibly emerging as a Thursday pairing.

Sporting CP team news

Sporting suffered two major knocks in the first leg when captain Sebastián Coates and midfielder Hidemasa Morita were both booked, meaning they will be suspended for the first leg.

However, Ruben Amorim will welcome Manuel Ugarte after his suspension and Pote is likely to join him in Sporting’s midfield. Young defender Ousmane Diomande is expected to replace Coates in the third defence.
If not, the guests will likely remain unchanged from last Thursday’s clash. Arsenal vs Sporting CP expected lineups

Arsenal: Turner; Tomiyasu, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney; Jorignho, Smith Rowe, Xhaka; Fabio Vieira, Trossard, Nelson

Sports CP: Adan; Inacio, Diomande, St. Juste; Esgaio, Pote, Ugarte, Reis; Edwards, Paulinho, Trincao.

Arsenal’s recent form

Fulham 0-3 Arsenal (12/03) – Premier League

Arsenal 3-2 Bournemouth (04/03) – Premier League

Arsenal 4-0 Everton (01/03) – Premier League

Leicester 0-1 Arsenal (25/02) – Premier League

The recent form of Sporting CP

Sporting CP 3-0 Boavista (12/03) – Primeira Liga

Sporting CP – Arsenal 2-2 (09/03) – Europa League

Portimonense-Sporting CP 0-1 (04/03) – Primeira Liga

Sporting CP – Estoril Praia 2-0 (27/02) – Primeira Liga

Midtjylland – Sporting CP 0-4 (23/02) – Europa League


Sporting were never going to be pushovers, and it will be interesting to see how strong Arteta will be for the second leg, as his alternate XI struggled a bit in Lisbon. I suspect the Spaniard will make changes again which means another highly competitive match is on the way.

The Portuguese showed us what they stand for last week. They are technically skilled in construction, sporadic pressurers but smart and lightning fast in transitions. Arsenal cannot afford to be sloppy in build again but I fear they will be if Arteta shakes up his side again.

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