FC Copenhagen VS Leicester City Prediction
FC Copenhagen returns at home after four games on the road, where on Wednesday night “Lions” from Danish capital will aim to end Leicester City’s Champions League winning streak. Both sides are in Group G of the 2016-17 UEFA Champions League and exactly like two weeks ago, they still remain on first two positions, but “The Foxes” have improved their leadership on top as a result of their narrow win vs FCK last round. Meanwhile Copenhagen remains second but Danish champion shares same number of points with Porto, so Ståle Solbakken’s men will be keen to earn something from Leicester City, since everyone expects another victory of Porto over Club Brugge.
FC Copenhagen vs Leicester City – Team News and Match Preview
Surprising English Premier League champions from season 2015-2016 need just one more win and they’ll guarantee position on the Champions League 1/8 finals, which will be another remarkable achievement during Claudio Ranieri’s reign. Italian manager has already won eternal greatness in club from Leicestershire and his name will stay with golden letters in Leicester City’s history, that’s out of question. Nobody can’t blame Leicester City for their current EPL season since most major clubs have invested enormous quantity of money in their summer transfer budgets, and it was also expected a drop in Leicester’s form. Especially after transfer of N’Golo Kante who was Leicester City’s engine and his presence in midfield was crucial for that extraordinary 2015-16 campaign. However, Claudio Ranieri’s men are flawless in their Champions League debut and they also show signs of improvement in the Premier League, where last weekend Leicester City slipped Tottenham Hotspur at the “White Hart Lane” in London – 1-1 draw. It was preceded by a 3-1 win over Crystal Palace and these two results have moved Leicester City to 11th position, where “Foxes” are with just 14 points after 10 rounds. Nevertheless, Leicester is with 9 out of 9 in the Champions League and victories against all other Group G contenders are placing Claudio Ranieri’s side next to some of the biggest clubs in Europe. Indeed, Leicester City is alongside Barcelona and Atletico Madrid, as they form trio of all teams which have won the full set of points in first three rounds. Even more, Leicester City shares joint position with teams of Atletico Madrid, Juventus and Sevilla – all of them still haven’t concede a goal.
Copenhagen lost its trip to England but Danish team will be even more determined in the second leg, especially when they have the home advantage on their side. Copenhagen’s visit at the “King Power Stadium” was first from all four successive away games which “Lions” had to play in past few weeks. Despite their first Champions League defeat, Copenhagen were brilliant in the domestic competitions where Ståle Solbakken’s men have scored 12 goals in three games, which features two Superliga wins and a 6-1 win against Jammerbug in the Danish Cup. Both league victories were against Odense (0-3) and Midtjylland (1-3) last weekend, which leaves Copenhagen on top of the league and to be even more exact, loss in Leicester is actually FCK’s only defeat this season. This includes 5 wins and 3 draws in previous Champions League games (if we count the qualifying rounds), as well as more 11 wins and 5 draws on the domestic scene.
FC Copenhagen vs Leicester City – Betting Prediction and Possible Lineups
Copenhagen holds a record of four wins in four home games in this year’s Champions League campaign, keeping a clean sheet in all of them. Qualifying victories over Crusaders (6-0), Astra (3-0) and APOEL Nicosia (1-0) remain back in the summer, but the 4-0 win vs Club Brugge was in end of September and part of the group stage. This shows certain potential in the Danish team and Norwegian manager Ståle Solbakken can be pleased he can use his main players for that game.
Defender Nicolai Boilesen trains again and he can be option for FCK, but we believe Solbakken will stick to the regular defensive quartet. His only injury concerns are related with names of Danny Amankwaa and Bashkim Kadrii, but their status is of backups anyway. William Kvist and Thomas Delaney will have to win battle in midfield and their stability there will be significant. Otherwise players like Benjamin Verbic, Kasper Kusk, Youssef Toutouh and Rasmus Falk Jensen compete for position on both wings, while most likely Andreas Cornelius and Federico Santander will form the central forward duo. Andrija Pavlovic can be a replacement in case that FCK have to refresh their attacking line, like it happened in the first leg between both clubs.
Leicester City travels to Denmark inspired by the weekend result against Spurs which was their first point away from home in the Premier League. That’s right, Leicester have lost in any previous EPL outing and their only away win in season 2016-17 is the 0-3 against Club Brugge on matchday one.
Claudio Ranieri will hope to use enthusiasm of his players and to achieve fourth consecutive win in the most prestigious tournament in European club football. Of course, draw won’t be that bad too, but victory will make Leicester’s top 16 position rock-solid. Unfortunately, Ranieri stated Islam Slimani won’t be fit enough to start and he doesn’t want to risk its striker here, but however, presence of Shinji Okazaki as an eventual partner of Jamie Vardy can be really useful. We all know what type of player the Japanese is and he has endless stamina, huge contribution in midfield and he can push a lot. Exactly the type of player Ranieri needs here and we believe Italian manager will start with similar squad as in game against Tottenham. Only rotation may be influenced by Ahmed Musa’s injury, who should be ready for that game after picking up a knock while he netted the equalizer on Saturday afternoon, so someone between Marc Albrighton and Jeffrey Schlupp may start on the left wing.
Former midfielder of Copenhagen, Daniel Amartey, may remain on the bench as expectations are Leicester City will start with same midfield duo – Andy King and Daniel Drinkwater.
Final conclusion and Betting Prediction
Danish champion had its own scoring chances in the first leg and to be honest, they were even more than of the home side. We believe FCK can use them in the second game and “Lions” must show teeth if they want to retain good position for potential Round of 16 breakthrough.
We all know Leicester City can be extremely lethal on counter attacks and we expect more cautious, more clever approach by “The Foxes”.
That’s why our betting recommendation goes for “Both teams to score – Yes“. We find goo value in that bet as we expect both sides to score here.
Venue: “Telia Parken”, Copenhagen.
Referee: Felix Brych from Germany.
Possible starting lineups of FC Copenhagen and Leicester City
FC Copenhagen: Robin Olsen – Ludwig Augustinsson, Erik Johansson, Mathias “Zanka” Jørgensen, Peter Ankersen – Benjamin Verbic, Thomas Delaney, William Kvist, Rasmus Falk Jensen – Federico Santander, Andreas Cornelius. (4-4-2)
Leicester City: Kasper Schmeichel – Christian Fuchs, Robert Huth, Wes Morgan, Danny Simpson – Marc Albrighton, Danny Drinkwater, Andy King, Riyad Mahrez – Shinji Okazaki, Jamie Vardy. (4-4-2)