Portimonense: Point made


New Portimonense manager Paulo Sérgio’s first game in charge saw a more aggressive approach, halting a run of four successive defeats, and resulting in a draw which could have, given a slice of luck, turned into a victory.

The around 2,500 spectators who filled the home stand of the Municipal Stadium last Saturday afternoon were treated to a lively opening half-hour with Dener, Boa Morte and Tabata creating all kinds of problems for opposition keeper Mateus Pasinato.

The experienced Brazilian was finally beaten in the 27th minute when only able to bunch a Pedro Sá header from a Bruno Costa corner against the crossbar, allowing Jadson to guide home the rebound.

Dener could have made it two from an Anzai cross shortly afterwards but was thwarted by a combination of the woodwork and more good work from Pasinato. Unfortunately, Moreirense managed to mount a rare counterattack only minutes later, Bilel squaring the ball for Fábio Abreu to sneak in ahead of Jadson at the near post and score.

Following a tactical change by the visitors after the interval, with a 4-4-2 formation reducing space in midfield, the 1-1 score line never looked in much danger of changing. Three substitutions by each side robbed the encounter of its fluency and there was little further goal mouth action as the final whistle beckoned.

After the match, Sérgio declared himself happy with the initial performance of his team but regretting subsequent now-habitual mistakes, while Tabata, recently returned from Olympic qualifying duty with Brazil and put off a move to China by the Corona virus outbreak, was confident of a brighter future based on this evidence.

Having gained a point on fellow relegation candidates Paços de Ferreira (beaten 3-0 by Marítimo on Madeira) to close the gap to one counter, Portimonense now face a difficult trip to title-chasing Porto this Sunday evening.