• Tuesday, 21 April 2009

    Superliga Round 25 Review: Sporting keep pressure on

    Estrela Amadora 0 - 2 Paços de Ferreira
    Nacional Funchal 1 - 1 Sporting Braga
    Vitoria Guimaraes 1 - 2 Sporting CP
    Rio Ave 2 - 1 CD Trofense
    Maritimo Funchal 1 - 1 OS Belenenses
    Academica de Coimbra 0 - 3 FC Porto
    Vitoria Setubal0 - 4 Benfica
    Naval 1 - 0 Leixões

    As Porto keep on winning, so Sporting keep the pressure on and mean that Jesualdo Ferreira just cannot relax as his team chase another title. This round was easier for Porto than it was for Sporting, the northerners comfortable beating Academica with goals from Mariano Gonzalez (2) and a penalty from Lisandro Lopez to notch up his 6th of the season. Academica should have had a penalty early on but apart from that created little, ending a 5-game unbeaten run.

    Sporting's victory was harder but doubtless more satisfying as they came from behind to defeat Guimaraes, who have proved problematic for opponents recently. Roberto had put the hosts in front before two goals in the last ten minutes, from Derlei and then (of course) Liedson, swung the match the way of the capital team. This was after Paolo Bento had been sent to the stands for remonstrating with the referee. Guimaraes are 8th and about as solidly mid-table as could be.

    Benfica bounced back from their miserable defeat last week to thrash lowly Setubal, giving Quique Sanchez Flores a significant lift but with 5 games left and 8 points the gap to Porto, their title chances are gone. Oscar Cardozo scored twice here, getting on the scoresheet alongside a brace from the now veteran Nuno Gomes. Fourth and Fifth met on Saturday as Nacional and Braga drew, Uruguyan striker Luis Aguiar putting Braga in front from the spot before Nene scored his 18th of the season to ensure a share of the spoils for the Madeirans.

    Leixões's miserable 2009 continues after they lost at Naval on Monday, a solitary Paulao goal enough to condemn them to their fourth defeat in five that has extinguished what were once highly promising European aspirations. The clash of the bottom two saw Rio Ave overcome Trofense to leapfrog them, after first half goals from Yazalde and Fabio Coentrao. After Belenenses pulled off a surprising draw at Maritimo the gap between the two is now just one point. Pacos continued their revival, beating Amadora on Friday night to condemn the Lisbonites to their third straight defeat.

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