“An excellent victory” for Portimonense

Portimonense beat Famalicão 2-1 last Saturday morning to retain their unbeaten home record this season and move 12 and 16 points clear of second and third-placed Aves and Varzim respectively.

Manager Vítor Oliveira’s team, severely depleted by the absence of the injured Lucas, Jadson, Brendon, Marcel, Ewerton, Buba and Stanley, made a bright start to a closely contested match, but it was Famalicão’s Quichini who almost put the visitors ahead when hitting the bar in the 17th minute.

There then followed several good scoring opportunities at either end, featuring some excellent work from both keepers before Paulinho, Fabrício and finally Gustavo combined well on the counter attack to set up Pires for the only goal of the half shortly before the interval.

The restart saw the visitors come out in search of the equaliser and Portimonense’s Ricardo Ferreira once again demonstrated why he is rated as one of the best keepers in the second division when shining on at least two occasions to maintain his team’s advantage.

With the game hanging very much in the balance, Ledman LigaPRO top marksman Pires then brought his personal tally up to 18 by latching on to a 54th-minute Paulinho free-kick to make it 2-0 on the morning.

Undeterred, Famalicão continued to come forward and were finally rewarded when Tozé found a way past Ferreira in the 81st minute. With the somewhat anxious final minutes ticking away, there was still time for Fabrício to rattle the woodwork before the approximately 1,500-strong home support was able to start celebrations.

“An excellent victory,” Oliveira commented afterwards. “We are going through a bad phase and a draw would have been acceptable.”

The three points stood Portimonense in particularly good stead as closest challengers Aves could only draw at Leixões, but this Sunday afternoon’s opponents, in-form Varzim, third in the table following five successive away wins, should provide a stern test at the end of what will already have been a difficult week – prior to that home encounter Portimonense were back on the road and in mid-week action at Seixal where fourth-placed Benfica B provided the opposition (match played after the Resident went to press).


Photo: Portimonense keeper Ricardo Ferreira, rated as one of the best keepers in the second division