Marítimo recorded their first ever win in Portimão when scoring in injury time to defeat manager Vítor Oliveira’s men 2-1 last Monday night.
A hard-fought opening 45 minutes during which Madeira’s Everton was fortunate to stay on the pitch following a very high tackle – the referee only showed a yellow card after consulting the video replay – provided little in the way of real scoring opportunities at either end, the best of which perhaps falling to Paulinho whose free kick from just outside the area was blocked before penalty appeals for a foul on Tabata were waved away.
Portimonense began the second half with more purpose following the introduction of Pires for Wellington and Paulinho should have done better than forcing a good save from Marítimo keeper Charles when put through on goal in the 54th minute. That ‘miss’ was duly punished a quarter-of-an-hour later when Edgar Costa latched on to a perfectly weighted Cleber pass to put the islanders ahead.
With the clock approaching full time, last season’s top scorer Pires once again demonstrated his predatory instincts when meeting a Manafá cross into the area first time to squeeze the ball home through Charles’ legs for the more-than-deserved equaliser.
Algarvean celebrations had hardly died down as five minutes of injury time were added and then turned into despair as another Cleber pass found Ricardo Valente who netted the cruellest of winners.
“A draw would have been a fair result” was Oliveira’s terse comment after having watched his inexperienced side at the losing end of a promising performance for the third consecutive match.
Monday’s game was preceded by the official presentation of two new loan signings, 23-year-old Japanese forward Shoya Nakajima from FC Tokyo and 25-year-old Spanish defensive midfielder Oriol Rosell from Sporting Lisbon.
Nakajima has represented his country at junior international and Olympic levels while Rosell, a member of the Catalonia national team, came through the Barcelona youth system and has played for Kansas City in the United States before moving to Lisbon in 2014 and subsequently enjoying loan spells at Vitória de Guimarães and Belenenses.
It is hoped that both players can feature in the team as soon as possible as Portimonense are back in League Cup action this Saturday against Chaves before facing a difficult trip to reigning champions Benfica following the international break on Sunday, September 10.
By SKIP BANDELE
Photo: Portimonense’s top scorer Pires