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Dynamo Kiev - Porto Preview: Portuguese champions look to maintain perfect start
Dragons will look to in-form Colombian duo James Rodriguez and Jackson Martinez as they look to do the double over hosts to consolidate their position at the top of Group A
By Stephen Gillett
Husyev, Mykhalyk, Khackeridi, Betao
Koval, Yarmolenko, Vukojevic, Haruna,
Danilo, Otamendi, Maicon, Miguel Lopes
Varela, Martinez, James
Vitor Pereira's Porto will aim to maintain their perfect start to their Champions League campaign against Oleg Blokhin's Dynamo Kiev on Tuesday.
Despite losing star asset Hulk to Zenit St Petersburg at the start of the campaign, the Portuguese champions have made a blistering start on all fronts and will be looking to put the Ukrainians to the sword for a second time - after their 3-2 victory at the Estadio do Dragao in the last round of matches.
Hulk's replacement Jackson Martinez has been key to Porto's fine form, the Columbian scoring 12 goals in 13 games so far, including two in Porto's 5-0 thumping of Maritimo last Friday. He and his compatriot James Rodriguez - who continues to be linked to with Manchester United - will pose a real threat to a Kiev side who know that defeat on Tuesday will, realistically, put their Champions League dreams to bed for another year.
Runners-up domestically last season, Kiev have made an indifferent start this time round. However, they enter Tuesday's game on the back of a 2-0 win against SC Tavriya Simferopol 2-0 on Saturday - a victory that ended a run of four matches without a win in all competitions - their worst sequence since August 2010.
Kiev currently lie third in Group A with three points: their only victory so far coming in a 2-0 win against Dinamo Zagreb on matchday two. They lost either side of that win, however, to Porto (3-2) and Paris Saint-Germain (4-1).
|DID YOU KNOW|
- Porto's next win in competition will be their 150th.
- Dragons have started the Champions
League group stage with three victories for the first time since 1996/97, when they won four in succession.
- Lucho Gonzalez scored in the 2-0 win at Dinamo Zagreb on matchday one and has now registered in all eight
seasons he has appeared in the Champions League.
- Dynamo Kiev's Miguel Veloso is a Portugal team-mate of Joao Moutinho, Rolando, Silvestre Varela and Miguel Lopes.
- Dynamo have won just one of their last 16 away games in the Champions League group stage – at Porto in October 2008.
- The Kiev club have conceded seven goals, the joint highest in the group stage along with Spartak Moscow, FC Nordsjaelland and Manchester City.
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Top 3 Predictions
Dynamo Kiev 1-2 Porto
- 18.42 %
Dynamo Kiev 1-1 Porto
- 13.91 %
Dynamo Kiev 0-2 Porto
- 11.65 %
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Nov 6, 2012||Dynamo Kiev 0 - Porto 0|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Oct 24, 2012||Porto 3 - Dynamo Kiev 2|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Nov 5, 2008||Dynamo Kiev 1 - Porto 2|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Oct 21, 2008||Porto 0 - Dynamo Kiev 1|
|Feb 21, 2013||Bordeaux 1 - Dynamo Kiev 0||EL|
|Feb 14, 2013||Dynamo Kiev 1 - Bordeaux 1||EL|
|Dec 4, 2012||Dinamo Zagreb 1 - Dynamo Kiev 1||UCL|
|Nov 21, 2012||Dynamo Kiev 0 - Paris Saint-Germain 2||UCL|
|Nov 6, 2012||Dynamo Kiev 0 - Porto 0||UCL|
|25||Haruna Abdulkarim Lukman||Midfielder|
|15||Juan Manuel Iturbe Arévalo||Striker|
|-||Christian Twasam Atsu||Striker|
The Nigerian international has made an impact in Kiev since his arrival from French side Sochaux. The pacy striker has notched 20 goals in 41 appearances for Dynamo and the Ukrainians are likely to need his goalscoring prowess if they are to defeat the Portuguese champions. Brown has developed a reputation for scoring important goals and Kiev fans will be hoping to see one of his trademark back-flips tonight.
The 21-year-old is a real prospect and has been central to Porto's unbeaten start to the season at home and abroad. The Colombian international offers creativity and goals and already has 20 to his name in 48 appearances at the Estadio Do Dragao. He has struck up a fantastic understanding with fellow countryman Jackson Martinez and Kiev would do well to track both players very carefully if they are to keep a clean sheet.
Kiev know this is a huge fixture for them and, with home support, they are likely to make this a difficult evening for Vitor Pereira's Porto side. However, the Dragons are in great form at the moment and are likely to get something from the game - even if it's a point - given their firepower upfront and current sky-high confidence.