Lucas at the double!

Portimonense came from behind to maintain their impressive 13-game unbeaten start to the current league season – a new record for the second division – by beating Vizela 2-1 last Sunday afternoon.

Much like most visitors to the municipal stadium in recent times, the team from Portugal’s Braga region arrived with the intention to defend in numbers while relying on the occasional counter-attack to come away with something from the match – and thanks to some below par finishing the strategy almost worked.

During the first half, Pedro Sá, Lumor and Gustavo were all guilty of misses while Vizela keeper Paulo Ribeiro produced good saves from Paulinho and Pires to keep the encounter goalless. A rare forward move five minutes before the interval then saw stand-in Portimonense captain Jadson bring down Kukula, with Alex Porto converting the resulting penalty to hand the visitors an unlikely half-time lead.

Portimonense stepped up the pace after the restart and only the woodwork prevented first Paulinho and then Amilton from levelling the match. The equaliser finally arrived in the 75th minute with Lucas smashing home after Ribeiro had parried a Jadson header.

Thus galvanized, manager Vitor Oliveira’s men increased their efforts even further and after Pires hit the post, the more-than-deserved winner duly arrived in the first minute of injury time when Ribeiro brilliantly kept out a Stanley screamer only to find Lucas again at hand to put the loose ball away.

The 10th victory of the campaign coupled with Aves’ 2-0 win at Santa Clara now has Portimonense on 33 points, seven clear of the two last named clubs who share second place on 26. Next up is a televised Sunday morning (11.15am kick-off) trip to mid-table Gil Vicente while Santa Clara and Aves will have played Sporting B and Académica, respectively, 24 hours earlier.