Sporting vs Villarreal: Predictions, Betting Tips & Odds
The match is over.
Sporting welcome Villarreal to Lisbon for this Iberian derby with both sides experiencing a poor run of form.
Sporting qualified from their Europa League group with little trouble – easily beating Vorskla Poltava and Qarabag twice while picking up a point from their games against Arsenal. The knock out rounds will be more difficult although Villarreal are experiencing a shocking season and could be there for the taking.
Villarreal finished top of their group having not lost a single match. But their position is a little deceiving. They only actually won two of their six games and five of their 12 goals came in one match at home to Rapid Wien. The first leg of this tie is pivotal and Villarreal will need to be on form to give themselves any chance in the return match.
Sporting’s five league defeats already this season has virtually seen them concede the title to one of Porto, Benfica or Braga – so a long European campaign should be their main priority. They meet Villarreal at a good time and should look to build a commanding lead to take to Spain the week after.
Villarreal are struggling in La Liga and may well be concentrating on staying up rather than go any further in the Europa League. The Yellow Submarine have only won three times all season – and not once since the end of November. Sporting could capitalise on their frailties and finish the first leg with a healthy 3-0 lead.
- Sporting to win
It is Sporting’s lack of form in the Portuguese Primeira Liga that probably accounts for the sports betting sites not being overly confident of them going into this match.
- Total goals over
Sporting may not be challenging for the title this season but they have been able to score goals.
1 x 2 Odds
Head to Head
These two sides have never met before.
- Sporting’s displays at home this season have been impressive – it is their away form that has let them down. The Lisbon club have lost only once in the league and only Arsenal took points off them in the Europa League.
- Villarreal have won only two games away from home in La Liga all season. But that is one more than they have managed on their own pitch.
- Sporting transferred out of the Champions League last season to enter the Europa League at this stage where they went on to beat Astana and Viktoria Plzen before being knocked out by eventual winners Atletico Madrid in the quarter finals.
- This is Villarreal’s fifth successive season of European football and they have progressed to the knock out rounds on each occasion. They even made it to the Europa League semi final in 2016 but lost to Liverpool 3-1 on aggregate.