Aside from a loss to rivals Sporting CP, Porto have had a fantastic start to the season, including a 4-1 aggregate win over Roma in their Champions League play-off. 20 year-old Andre Silva has been an early bright spot, scoring two goals in the league and adding another against Roma. FC Copenhagen are unsurprisingly undefeated in the Danish Superliga, but that record includes a trio of draws in their first five matches. Goals have not been a concern, with Kasper Kusk and Benjamin Verbic with three apiece and another five players on two goals across all competitions. A trip to Estádio do Dragão will certainly be their biggest test so far and an indication of whether they can make a surprise appearance in the knockout stages.
Porto are in the midst of an uncharacteristic trophyless drought, having not won anything for two seasons - the first time they’ve done so since 1981. They’ve brought in Valencia manager Nuno and kept hold of captain Hector Herrera and Algerian attacking midfielder Yacine Brahimi. There will be intense focus on winning a domestic trophy this season, but in a group that includes FC København, Club Brugge and Leicester City, there is no reason why they couldn’t simultaneously make progress in the Champions League. After a couple years in the wilderness, it could be a return to form for the Dragons.
The first Danish team to ever reach the group stages, FC Copenhagen are back in the competition after two years in the Europa League. The current Danish champions have a decent chance to repeat that feat with Club Brugge, FC Porto and Leicester City rounding out their group. They’ll have to do so without winger Nicolai Jørgensen, who was last season’s top scorer. Forward Federico Santander, their second highest scorer, will shoulder the goalscoring burden alongside København’s usual influx of young Danish talent. Having managed a draw against Barcelona the last time they made it to the knockout stages, getting out of this group is not an unrealistic aim.
One of three captains ever to win each of the Champions League, European Championship and the World Cup.
A box-to-box midfielder and key component of the Mexican national team.