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Porto vs Basel: How The Teams Would Line-Up If They Could Hold On To Their Players

Mikey Traynor
By Mikey Traynor
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Tonight's Champions League last 16 clash between FC Porto and FC Basel will not draw in the same amount of viewers as the likes of Barca v Man City, or PSG v Chelsea, but both clubs have a proud tradition of nurturing top talent from their youth teams.

We decided to take a look at the best possible squads you could make from current and former players of both Porto and Basel who are still playing, to see how the two clubs who have sold-on some of Europe's top players in recent seasons would look if they managed to hang on to their star players.


Here are our findings:

Possible Porto XI

Helton: The charismatic Brazilian keeper loves a pair of tracksuit bottoms.
Danilo: All of Europe's top clubs are currently eyeing up Danilo as one of the hottest prospects at the right-back position.
Mangala: Man City's expensive summer signing hasn't found his feet in England yet, but was a big player in his time at Porto and heavily linked with a host of top clubs before landing at City.
Pepe: Real Madrid's enforcer and chief wind-up-merchant.
Alex Sandro: Another full-back with bags of potential.
Hector Herrera: A star for Mexico in the 2014 World Cup, a complete midfielder.
Joao Moutinho: Left Porto for Monaco where he was last seen causing Arsenal all sorts of problems as Monaco won 3-1 at The Emirates.
Freddy Guarin: Scored an absolute screamer for Inter Milan as they progressed past Celtic in the Europa League. Inconsistent, but capable of the spectacular.
Hulk: The burly winger with a rocket for a shot has lost his way somewhat in Russia, but he was a huge player for Porto. Literally and figuratively.
James Rodriguez: Shining star of the 2014 World Cup, Real Madrid mega-money signing, undeserved winner of the 2014 Puskas Award (we're still bitter, Steph was robbed!).
Falcao: While he has yet to recover from the knee injury that forced him to miss the world cup, and he is clearly struggling to adapt in England, the Manchester United striker was electric for Porto and a consistent source of goals.

Possible Basel XI

Yann Sommer: Put in some brilliant Champions League performances for Basel before joining Borussia Monchengladbach where he has been playing consistently well in the Bundesliga.
Taulant Xhaka: Younger brother of Granit, rumoured to be the target of a number of clubs from Europe's top leagues.
Aleksandar Dragovic: Reported target of Manchester United, earning rave reviews for his performances in Ukraine.
Fabian Schär: Another young lad who is tipped for the top, linked all over Europe for his impressive performances in a Basel shirt these last two years.
Behrang Safari: Veteran defender who has been a reliable constant in Basel's recent campaigns.
Granit Xhaka: Tough tackling Swiss midfielder who absolutely dominated the Manchester United midfield in 2011, since joined Monchengladbach like Sommer and is impressing week in, week out.
Gokhan Inler: The centrepiece of the Napoli midfield in recent years, a complete midfielder who relishes a big game.
Ivan Rakitic: His sensational performances for Sevilla last year forced Barcelona to splash out on this Croatian maestro. Seems to be fitting in well at the Camp Nou.
Xherdan Shaqiri: Couldn't force Robben or Ribery out of the Bayern team, so recently moved to Serie A where he has been brilliant for a struggling Inter Milan.
Mohammed Salah: Signed by Chelsea for his exceptional Champions League performances last year, he has recently signed for Fiorentina on loan where he has already been voted "Signing of the season".
Felipe Caicedo: Former Manchester City flop who has been performing well for Espanyol in La Liga after a spell in Russia.

Two well run clubs who consistently produce and attract top young talent which they later sell on for inflated profits. The two sides will clash at the Estadio do Dragao with the score tied at 1-1 at the end of the first leg.



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