Portimonense return to action

Following an extended break, manager António Folha and his team will travel north to take on second division strugglers Cova da Piedade in the third round of the Placard Portuguese FA Cup.

The tie, scheduled to kick off at 3pm on Saturday afternoon, sees the Algarveans go in search of an elusive first competitive away win of the season, a task made more difficult by the probable absence of talisman Shoya Nakajima.

The outstanding forward, for whom Spanish La Liga leaders Seville are said to be about to make a concrete offer, will only have returned from the Far East at the end of this week.

Although only on the bench during his country’s 3-0 win against Panama, the 24-year-old subsequently made a significant contribution to a hard-fought 4-3 success over Uruguay, playing almost the full 90 minutes.

Meanwhile ‘off’ the pitch, Portimonense have been fined €765 by the league for giving the municipal stadium grass an irregular cut ahead of the last televised home game against Sporting Lisbon – apparently the centre circle roundels as opposed to parallel lines contravened regulations!