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Porto vs Shakhtar Donetsk Prediction 13 December 2023

Porto vs Shakhtar Donetsk Prediction 13 December 2023

Porto take on the visitors Shakhtar Donetsk in the round 6 match of UEFA Champions League group stage. The match will be played on Wednesday, December 13th at Estádio do Dragão (Porto).

Porto legitimately aspire to the status of the best club in their country, a football powerhouse in Portugal. However, they haven't always managed to lead there; last season, the title was taken by Benfica, and currently, they are in a dispute with two familiar rivals from Lisbon. Nevertheless, the club consistently made it to the Champions League playoffs in recent cycles. Overall, under the guidance of Sérgio Conceição, the team has achieved the expected results this season, without surprises in either the positive or negative direction. Despite losing twice to the nominal favorite, Barcelona, they showed a perfect result not only against Shakhtar but also against Antwerp. As a result, securing a finish in the second place hasn't been guaranteed yet, but even a draw would be enough – the results of direct matches will secure it, considering a victory in Hamburg.

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Shakhtar (Donetsk) can only regret that Pushich hasn't been working since the summer. During the offseason, the Orange-Blacks parted ways with Jovicic. Supposedly, they didn't forgive him for the humiliating exit from the Europa League against Feyenoord. However, he led the team, partially assembled anew in 2022, to the playoffs of that tournament through a 3rd place in the Champions League group. He also won the UPL again. His successor, Van Leuven, can only credit himself with a dramatic (and incredibly lucky) victory in Antwerp, where, after the break, they turned a 0-2 deficit into a 3-2 win thanks to opponents' mistakes. However, the defeat in the formally home match against Porto in the 1st round better reflected the level of the miners at that time, and the early parting with the Dutchman did not surprise anyone. Choosing a new coach was a different story since Pushich is not among the well-known coaches. Still, Mario debuted decently against Barcelona in Catalonia, even though he lost. In the next round, his new charges sensationally defeated the Blaugrana. By repeating 1-0 with the Belgians, the Ukrainian champions remained with chances for the Champions League playoffs. But to achieve that, they must win in Portugal now.

In 2011, the Dragons were stronger than the miners twice. Three years later, both matches ended in draws. The odds clearly favor Sérgio Conceição's team. However, a draw would be sufficient for them, and the hosts won't take unnecessary risks, aiming only to win. Therefore, it's better to bet that in this pair, the Orange-Blacks will win with a +1 goal handicap.

Prediction for the match: Shakhtar Donetsk to win with +1.0 handicap.

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Dylan McLaughlin
Football tipster