Discounting Bilbao's goal, the Portugal goalkeeper really did not have much to do for the entire 90 minutes.
Dealt with Llorente extremely well and was not fazed by the occasion as he proceeded to inspire confidence at the back for Sporting.
Enjoyed an adventurous first-half, where he continually forced Aurtenetxe back with his powerful running and desire to support in attack. Fizzled out in the second half, however.
Much like his fellow full-back, Insua was full of energy and endeavour from the offset. Made a number of eye-catching forays forward, and came close to scoring either side of half time. He may have helped the ball onto Aurtenetxe for the opening goal, but he came back in thunderous fashion to net the equaliser.
The Brazilian liked to get forward with the ball at his feet, but posed a slight risk to his team with his Lucio-esque defensive play. Still, he was not guilty of making any errors.
The anchor in midfield was not as busy as his fellow players in the middle of the park. He was made redundant when his team needed a goal and was sacrificed midway through the second half.
A surprise starter for Ricardo Sa Pinto's side, the young midfielder did no harm to his burgeoning reputation as he was innovative and wasn't afraid to run with the ball.
Not as involved as his team-mates but did not put a foot wrong throughout the match. Solid display from the Dutchman.
His intelligence both on and off the ball was important to Sporting gaining the upper hand in the first half, showing imagination in both his passing and playmaking.
Full of trickery, the winger's flair saw him excel in a free role and impressed with his footwork, as he ran rings round Bilbao players at times, and also his vision. Capped off a fine showing with the cross for Insua's equaliser and a brilliant winner from distance.
R. van Wolfswinkel
Had a few snapshots and showed decent hold-up play, but he looked hesitant to bust a gut into the box and preferred to sit on the fringes of the goalmouth. Lacked a striker's instinct.
For all of Sporting's early dominance, the goalkeeper had only one major attempt to deal with, albeit a stinging drive from a free kick. However after he interval, he was left stranded for both of the hosts' goals.
The burly defender was a rock at the back for Bilbao and did all of the dirty work. He made a couple of risky sacrifices for his team, including a suspect handball in the box, but it had to be done. Inspirational.
The Spain full-back flattered to deceive as he struggled to deal with the constant movement of Insua down the flank and was left wanting on more than one occasion. Very disappointing.
A sub-par start to proceedings saw him struggle against Pereira initially, but he eventually broke through his shackles and his forward-thinking allowed him to tap home the winner.
Similarly to his defensive partner, with Van Wolfswinkel looking to play deeper than a typical No.9, little went past the centre-back.
Much like the rest of the team, Herrera had little choice but to contain the high pressure exerted by Sporting's attacking midfielders at first. However, he grew in stature with a strong second half but was questionably replaced by San Jose.
Stupidly received a yellow card for an early challenge on Martins and will now miss the return leg at San Mames. However, a limp first half was succeeded by an improved showing in the second, and helped shut down Sporting's runners in the middle of the park.
We expected a lot more from the skilful winger, who wasted several openings in the first half and looked lethargic at times. His free kick may have lead to the first goal after the break, but he disgracefully allowed Insua a free header, which he scored from. Left the field of play with 15 minutes to spare.
The midfielder started at left-back and had a tough start to his evening with the marauding Pereira opposite him. However, he eventually got the better of his opponent and was comfortable for most part.
The powerful hitman was expected to give Xandao and Anderson Polga a difficult evening with his physical power and deft finishing, but he seemed isolated more often than not.
Showed glimpses of his talent at the beginning with the odd burst of pace and skill, but had a surprisingly ineffectual second 45, as he was given hardly any space and could not roam around as such.
- 12 Marcelo Boeck
Replaced Capel with six minutes to go.
- 5 O. Onyewu
- 31 Renato Neto
Came on for Martins and helped his team close out the result.
The Peruvian came on and injected a youthful impetus in midfield. His appearance coincided with Sporting's renaissance in the match.
- 13 Raúl
Struggled to adapt to the high tempo and furious nature of the match when he was thrown on for Herrera and could not impose himself on proceedings.
- 12 Koikili
- 31 Ramalho
- 11 Gabilondo
The striker came on too late to affect the match.
Late cameo from the midfielder.