Setting the scene

Let’s be honest here, Leicester City are all but qualified from Group G in the Champions League and should, barring a surprising turn of events, go through to the next round of the competition.

Claudio Ranieri’s only need a draw from Tuesday night’s meeting with Club Brugge KV at the King Power Stadium to ensure their progress, and considering they won 3-0 in Belgium back in September, odds are favourably on their side to repeat the feat.

Yet, their recent form has left a lot to be desired, and Club Brugge might look to take advantage of a possible loss of confidence on Tuesday.

The Belgian side, down their end, are doing slightly better, with a win, two draws and a loss in their last four games, and are currently fourth in the Jupiler Pro League, six points behind leaders Zulte Waregem after 15 games.

In the Champions League, however, all hope of making it through to the next round has vanished, with four losses so far in the group, while a five point gap between themselves and FC Copenhagen makes third spot a very, very difficult goal.

One to watch

Brugge have struggled to find the back of the net in recent weeks, scoring just two goals in four games, both thanks to their 27-year-old forward Jelle Vossen, who you might remember from a loan spell at Middlesbrough, and a two month stint at Burnley last season.

However, a player who might be worth keeping an eye on is 22-year-old Anthony Limbombe.

The Belgian winger joined the club from NEC in Holland in the summer, and has been eased into the side by manager Michel Preud’homme as the season has gone on.

Not in the squad against Leicester in September, there is a high chance the pacy forward will make an appearance, either from the off or from the bench, at the King Power Stadium on Tuesday night.

Favouring the left hand side in order to be able to cut in and shoot with his favoured right-foot, Limbombe is also capable of delivering the final ball and was key in Brugge’s 2-1 victory over Anderlecht towards the end of October, setting up both goals with near perfect left-footed crosses.

The youngster was linked with a transfer to Leeds United in the summer, but the move never materialised, and a return to Belgium with Club Brugge happened instead.

Injuries & suspensions

Brugge are currently rather injury free, with only two absences from the first-team squad in 22-year-old centre-back Björn Engels, out with a shoulder injury, while forward Abdoulay Diaby is also injured.

Good news for Brugge is the return of Lior Refaelov, who has missed around three months following groin surgery. However, the chances of him starting are slim to none.

Furthermore, the Belgian side will be without their important centre-midfielder/right winger Ruud Vormer, who is currently serving a one match suspension after picking up one too many yellow cards in the first three Champions League games.

Team predictions

While Preud’homme opted for five at the back against Leicester in September, recent games would suggest a back four is on the cards for Tuesday night’s clash.

Picking the same defence two games in a row, it’s further up the field that combinations could change, with a 4-2-3-1 a possibility, but a 4-4-1-1 could be chosen if the Belgian manager wants to keep things compact on the road.

Considering Brugge don’t have a lot to lose, a more attacking XI could be selected, with Limbombe as part of the first-team, as the youngster only made an appearance from the bench last Friday in a 1-0 win against Sint-Truidense.

If not, it is highly likely 24-year-old José Izquierdo will be selected in his stead.

However, with the league now a priority, there could be a few surprise inclusions, though, and some of the better players, like Denswil, could sit this one out.

Sport Witness predicted XI: Butelle, Van Rhijn, Poulain, Denswil/Mechele, Cools, Claudemir, Simons, Vossen, Vanaken, Limbombe/Izquierdo, Wesley

This is how Belgium newspaper Het Nieuwsblad see it:

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