LIGA BWIN: PORTIMONENSE 0-1 VIZELA
It is said you make your own luck, but Portimonense appear to be determined to extend their ongoing run of ‘unfortunate’ results as Vizela inflicted a fourth consecutive defeat upon the hapless Algarveans last Saturday afternoon.
Things began well for manager Paulo Sérgio’s men, with Vizela keeper Buntic only just managing to parry a stinging Mustapha Seck shot as follow-ups from Welinton Júnior and Lucas Ventura were blocked by the visitors’ defence.
Seck then went close again before generally weak referee Helder Carvalho showed Portimonense captain Pedro Sá yellow for a strong tackle on Kiki before changing his VAR-assisted mind to a straight red, leaving the home side to continue with 10 men from the 20th minute onwards.
Having weathered an initial Osmajic-led Vizela onslaught, Sérgio shuffled his pack during the half-time break, resulting in Portimonense regaining the upper hand despite their numerical inferiority.
Of the seven attempts on goal as opposed to Vizela’s paltry three, Filipe Relvas had the best chance of scoring, but only managed to steer his free header from a Seck corner wide on the hour mark.
Welinton wasted another good opportunity, blasting over the bar, as the match seemed to be heading for a draw, only for the ball to end up in the back of the net deep into injury time as that man Seck and Vizela’s Raphael Guzzo combined to bundle a Matheus Pereira cross over the line.
As the final whistle confirmed the latest reversal, Paulo Sérgio’s frustration boiled over, and the manager involved himself in an acrimonious and unseemly altercation with a home fan after being subjected to verbal insults from the stands.
However, once again, results elsewhere favoured the Algarveans, Paços Ferreira and Marítimo both failing to make inroads on Portimonense’s 10-point advantage. Last-placed Santa Clara was also defeated and remains 11 points away.
Following the international break, another ‘big ask’ awaits as a trip to Porto on April 2 is next up.
Off the pitch, majority shareholder Theodoro Fonseca and Portimonense SAD have turned down a €40 million takeover bid from Chelsea for 75% of the club. Portimonense have previously rebuffed approaches from Manchester’s ‘City Group’ as well as Mexican, Chinese and Japanese investors.
By SKIP BANDELE