It’s too early to make any sense of it, but Sporting find the best antidote for a completely unusual start to the season. Without a coach, without a significant part of the workforce and still with rust, the “lions” go against the circumstances with victories. Not too spectacular, with a few thrills, but with efficiency. After a positive entry into the Europa League, Sporting got off to a good start in the I League, with a 0-2 victory over Paços de Ferreira in a game counting for the second round. They were the first three points of the championship ‘lions’ (their first round match with Gil Vicente was postponed), while the pacenses keep the first round tie point in Portimão.
From a distance, and limited in his options, Rúben Amorim chose the same “eleven” he climbed to face Aberdeen a few days ago, counting on the integration achieved in this first match, and leaving behind some wear and tear. natural physique resulting from the calendar. charge.
Pepa, a coach accustomed to making life difficult for “lions”, certainly had this in his notebook when he sent his team to selectively lobby “leonine” outlets for the attack. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t, then the “lion broke away to attack quickly and deliberately.”
On the left, Nuno Mendes was Sporting’s main source of danger. At 2 ‘, he made a perfect cross towards Tiago Tomás, but the young striker, who scored in the first game, shot.
Paços immediately responded with an almost accurate shot from Douglas Tanque in the 7 ‘- Adán didn’t even move and the ball went close to the post.
The “leonina” answer was in a shot from Porro, defended by Jordi, at the request of Jovane Cabral.
The first goal didn’t take long. In a Nuno Mendes corner kick the ball went into the small area, Pacense’s defense softened incompletely and it was at the mercy of Tomás, who shot in the direction of the goal, but hit Stephen Eustáquio and, later, in the arm of Tanque. Fábio Veríssimo scored a penalty, Jovane took responsibility and made it 0-1, Sporting’s first in the game and in the championship.
Shortly thereafter, the Cape Verdean winger was reportedly injured and leaped off the Nuno Santos bench to make his official debut, having recovered from the covid-19 infection (like Eduardo Quaresma), and ahead of Gonzalo Plata, who appears to be lose space between the first options.
The old Rio Ave quickly showed what was to come, speed, verticality and mobility. It was like that during the 60 ‘, he was on the field.
Paços even managed to split the game, created problems and forced Sporting to make mistakes on several occasions, but it was rarely dangerous. After finding himself at a disadvantage, he had a chance to score – a well-scored free kick to escape Sporting’s defensive line, but none of the three home men managed to mend for the goal. Adán.
Before completing the first half, Tomás had again scored on his feet, at Vietto’s request, but his touch of the ball was neither a goal nor to help Nuno Santos, who was in a better position.
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Even without breath and without legs for 90 minutes, Sporting knew how to be sufficiently informed to control what was going on in the match and to give themselves more leeway.
At 63 ‘Nuno Mendes pulled out one of his many perfect crosses again and this time found Feddal, who in turn sent the ball to his defense partner Sebastian Coates to make it 0-2, a fair price for the Uruguayan power plant, another of Sporting’s good performances.
The doubling of the handicap further discouraged the home side, who only approached with danger beyond the 90th, on a header from João Pedro after a corner passed over the crossbar. And so Sporting, still imperfect in its dynamics and far from being a finished product, remained victorious and without conceding goals. You can’t ask for more.