Portimonense Outgunned

Portimonense’s latest outing in Covilhã was almost over before it began as Sporting scored three times without reply during the opening quarter-of-an-hour.

The home side’s Zé Tiago only took five minutes to find the back of the net and added a second shortly afterwards before Traquina made it three.

When the shell-shocked Algarveans were finally able to react, the Covilhã defence stood firm with keeper Taborda pulling off a string of excellent saves.

The hosts remained in control after the interval and Erivelto grabbed a fourth just after the hour-mark to seal a thoroughly deserved victory for the Beira interior team.

Whereas Portimonense did not play badly, the performance showed that manager Vitor Maçãs will probably be glad to see both injured central defender Mamadu and influential winger Kanazaki, who is still recovering from illness, return to his starting eleven.

In addition, the club is hopeful of signing Braga’s Nikiema and Brazilian Arthur Santos in order to reinforce the midfield before the January transfer window shuts on Monday.

Results elsewhere mean that only five points separate the top six teams in the division and, still unbeaten at home, Portimonense have every chance of regaining winning ways this Sunday afternoon when second-from-bottom Marítimo B make the long journey from Madeira to provide the opposition in the municipal stadium.

By SKIP BANDELE