Portimonense win at home

Portimonense 2-1 Vitória de Guimarães

Portimonense gained three important points with a combative and ultimately more-than-deserved 2-1 Sunday lunchtime victory over fellow mid-table side Vitória de Guimarães.

Manager Vítor Oliveira’s men looked more composed and purposeful from the outset than during the two most recent reversals, early corners being followed by a narrowly wide Ruben Fernandes’ header from a Shoya Nakajima free-kick.

The outstanding Japanese forward was again the instigator as Fabrício raced onto his through ball, but, on this occasion, Guimarães keeper Douglas was quick off his line to deny the Brazilian.

With 18 minutes on the clock, another telling Nakajima pass into the opposition area found Wellington who managed to squeeze the ball home under the body of a falling defender from the tightest of angles for the lead.

Almost by return, referee Luís Godinho adjudged a Marcel tackle on Rafael Martins on the edge of the Portimonense area to have been illegal and inside the box, Raphinha putting the subsequent spot kick away to make it 1-1.

On the half-hour mark, Pedro Sá put Fabrício through, but this time Douglas’ effort to stop the Portimonense top scorer bearing down on goal was ill-timed, the keeper felling the Brazilian with a flying boot to the midriff still outside his area.

Douglas received a straight red card for his trouble, being replaced by Miguel Silva between the sticks, while Fabrício was stretchered off, later needing 18 stitches to a hip wound.

Before the interval, his replacement, Pires, almost punished 10-man Guimarães, but his shot on the turn was blocked and Nakajima’s follow-up soared over the cross-bar.

The second half saw Portimonense pushing hard for the winner with the visitors unable to create any danger at the opposite end. Ewerton served warning when thumping his 51st-minute shot against the post, and confirmed his intent with an hour gone as he set up Pires for the winner.

In the 62nd-minute, it was Wellington’s turn to rattle the upright and, as Portimonense continued to dominate the remainder of the match, a more comfortable winning margin was only prevented by a great save by Silva from substitute Galeno right at the death.

“The victory was fundamental to our objectives,” Oliveira told the press afterwards. “For 80 minutes, we were the better side against quality opposition.”

The win leaves Portimonense ninth in the table on 30 points ahead of tomorrow’s (Friday) trip to 15th-placed Vitória de Setúbal where another three points to the good would be most welcome.