Porto and Galatasaray might be European regulars, but the second round of UEFA Champions League group fixtures is bringing them together for the first time. Galatasaray boasts a distinguished record against European competition – in 272 European matches the Lions have a record of 99 wins, 71 draws and 102 defeats. Galatasaray is the early pacesetter in Group D having dismantled Lokomotiv Moscow 3-0 on match day one, its biggest home UEFA Champions League win in 20 years. On the other hand, Porto earned a 1-1 draw at Schalke, although if it was not for an early missed penalty, it might have also earned three points. Reigning Turkish league champion Galatasaray last reached the UEFA Champions League round of 16 in 2013-14. Moreover, the Lions are in the group stage for the 15th time – the same number as all other Turkish teams combined.The Istanbul club's 2017-18 European campaign ended early after it lost 3-1 on aggregate to Swedish club Östersund in the UEFA Europa League's second qualifying round. The Lions have lost their last four European away matches, and in their last 13 European matches, in general, they have lost 10 and drew two. Their last win before last month's victory against Lokomotiv Moscow was against Schalke in the 2012-13 UEFA Champions League round of 16.
Galatasaray was victorious in each of its first two games in Portugal, although its most recent brought a 2-1 defeat at Benfica in the 2015-16 UEFA Champions League group stages. The Lions are the only team from Turkey to have reached a European Cup semifinal, in 1989.
Porto picked up six points at home in last season's group stages, when its first home game was also against Turkish opposition – it lost against Beşiktaş 3-1. That was Porto's first defeat against a Turkish club; having subsequently drawn 1-1 in Istanbul, their record in 10 such fixtures is now 6-3-1. Galatasaray's Garry Rodrigues had played in Portugal for Real Massama (2007-09) while Porto's Fabiano (Fenerbahçe 2015-17) and Vincent Aboubakar (Beşiktaş 2016-17) also played in Turkey.
Meanwhile, in Group D, Schalke is making the long trip to Russia to face off against Lokomotiv Moscow. Elsewhere today, Liverpool is looking to bounce back against Napoli in Group C after losing to Chelsea in the League Cup and drawing in the league. Napoli boss Carlo Ancelotti is meeting Liverpool after two unforgettable Champions League finals, while the Reds' helmsman Jürgen Klopp hopes to avenge an elimination suffered when the Italian was steering Real Madrid.
Tottenham Hotspur is welcoming an out-of-form Barcelona in Wembley Stadium today. Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino has a bit of an injury crisis after Dele Alli sat out Saturday's win over Huddersfield where Jan Vertonghen and Moussa Dembele also picked up injuries.In the opening Group B game, the Spurs were defeated at Inter Milan, who now meets PSV Eindhoven.Heading into the match, Barcelona's superstar Lionel Messi said, "We know we have to be stronger defensively."
"Last season we were difficult to score against and now teams score against us from the slightest chance. We have to get better," he added. Barca's Luis Suarez has not scored on the road in Europe for over three years. If he can end that run at Wembley against Tottenham it will help lift the burden on his friend Messi.
Also in other action, Paris Saint-Germain, who lost to Liverpool on opening day, hosts Red Star Belgrade. Germany's league leader Borussia Dortmund hosts Monaco in Group A while Atletico Madrid is without Stefan Savic and midfielder Gelson Martins against Club Brugge.
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