PSV Eindhoven head to Portugal on Thursday for a crucial Europa League clash with Sporting club de Portugal. Kick-off is at 8pm.

PSV were cruising in the Europa League after wins against Sporting and Rosenborg but a draw and then loss to LASK Linz have left them in a fight to progress to the next round.

On Thursday, PSV head to Portugal sitting third in the group and a defeat could leave their chances of progression in tatters, should LASK defeat Rosenborg.

Speaking at his press conference, Mark van Bommel said, ‘These are duels in a season that are very important. We would like to continue in Europe and the meeting with Sporting is crucial in this. If you want to achieve this, you must be able to convert this type of match into a good result.”

PSV’s recent form has been horrific but they ended their run of six straight games without a slender 2-1 win against Heerenveen at the weekend.

Sporting currently sit top of the group and a win against PSV will seal their progress to the next round. They have not played in two weeks, with their last clash a 2-0 win over Belenenses which moved them to fourth in the Portuguese league.

Team News

PSV have Steven Bergwijn and Donyell Malen back fit and both should start in attack on Thursday. Ibrahim Afellay and Toni Lato are out, along with long term absentee Sam Lammers.

Possible PSV line-up: Unnerstall, Dumfries, Sadilek, Viergever, Schwaab, Rosario, Gutierrez, Ihattaren, Doan, Bergwijn, Malen

Sporting will be without Sebastien Coates, Rodrigo Battaglia, Fernando and Jovane Cabral for the clash on Thursday.

Possible Sporting line-up: Ribeiro, Neto, Illori, Borja, Rosier, Henrique, Rodrigo Fernandes, Doumbia, Bruno Fernandes, Vietto, Bolasie

Odds

Sporting 7/5 Draw 12/5 PSV 19/10

Can PSV get a result in Portugal?

PSV have been in a crisis for the past month and the pressure has been big on Mark van Bommel. A defeat on Thursday could end any realistic chance of PSV progressing in Europe, and with the league title looking unrealistic, the season could be basically over for the team from Eindhoven.

It is crucial that PSV avoid defeat in Portugal and it is crucial that both Malen and Bergwijn are now back from injury. Without them, PSV looked hopeless all over the pitch but their return inspired the win over Heerenveen at the weekend.

Sporting have been in decent form recently but they are not unbeatable. PSV will need to stay strong defensively and look to take their chances on the counter through the pace of Malen.




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