LIGA PORTUGAL BETCLIC:
Portimonense 1-4 Boavista
Porto 2-1 Farense
The two Algarve top division clubs are still searching for their first points of the new season heading into the third matchday which will see Portimonense travel to Arouca and Farense welcome Chaves on Saturday afternoon and evening, respectively.
Firmly rooted to the bottom of the table following two heavy defeats, Portimonense appear to be finally paying the price for an ongoing policy of selling any and every player with a market value instead of building a team capable of holding its own at the highest level.
Last weekend, it took Boavista only 20 minutes to take a 3-0 lead at the Municipal Stadium with Ronie Carrillo managing a consolation goal already in time added on before Vukotic promptly made it 4-1.
Ironically, the one player Portimonense have so far not cashed in on despite offers ranging from €5 million to €10 million, Filipe Relvas, was involved in two Boavista goals, guiding home a misdirected clearance for the opener before deflecting the third past his own keeper.
It can only be hoped that this week’s return from Saudi Arabia of former captain Dener – with the club between 2014-21 – coupled with the most recent acquisition of ex-Sheffield Wednesday, Fulham, Everton and Wycombe Wanderers midfielder Dennis Adeniran, still only 24 years old, can lend some much-needed stability to the team.
Farense, on the other hand, although equally lowly in the league table, almost came away with a point from powerhouse Porto. In spite of overwhelming statistics in the home team’s favour such as 72% possession, 32 to Farense’s 8 shots on goal and 17 to 3 corner kicks, the half time score was level at 1-1 and keeper Ricardo Velho continued to excel until Marcano finally grabbed the winner in the tenth minute of injury time.
The imminent arrival of 22-year-old Argentine midfielder Facundo Cáseres from Croatia’s NK Istra 1961 can only strengthen the team and there is a decent chance of survival back in the big time if the fighting spirit displayed so far is maintained.
By SKIP BANDELE