Kick-off: 19:45 (BST)
Sporting coach Paulo Bento says it is “fundamental” that his team beat Roma as they look to reach parity with the Italian side in Group F.
Sporting lost 2-1 in Rome two weeks ago and trail the Giallorossi by three points in the section.
“It’s fundamental for us to win against Roma in order to reach our first objective, which is to continue in this competition after the group stage,” he said. “We know it’s a good situation for Roma because they won the first game, and now they can defend from the start, something I believe they are very capable of. They have skilful players with lots of experience. But it is not impossible for us to win and we will try our best.”
Roma captain Francesco Totti will miss the match because of the foot injury he sustained when these sides met a fortnight ago. Bento, though, does not believe his absence will necessarily work to Sporting’s advantage.
“Totti is a great player and he is always important for his team, but we’re not relieved because he’s not playing,” Bento said. “In Rome, the player who replaced Totti scored the winning goal.”
That was Mirko Vucinic and the Montenegro striker will continue in attack for the visitors. Despite being deprived of several key players through injury, Roma coach Luciano Spalletti will stick to his usual 4-2-3-1 system. With Alberto Aquilani and Taddei both absent, Vucinic will be supported by Mancini, Simone Perrotta and Ludovic Giuly with Daniele De Rossi and David Pizarro providing the anchor in midfield.
“There are no favourites in this match,” said Spalletti. “We will try to maintain our concentration throughout the game. The Champions League is a wonderful competition and this will guarantee the motivation of my players. I trust them, they have the right attitude, they are skilful and they know what I expect from them.”