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Sunday, 11 September 2011 20:21

Liga round-up

Wins for Leiria, Braga, Feirense and Maritimo

Sunday's four Liga matches saw Leiria pick up their first points of the season with a 1-0 win at Beira-Mar; Braga cruise past Gil Vicente 3-1 thanks to an inspired cameo from Nuno Gomes; Feirense continue their strong start to the season with a 2-1 win at Olhanense, and Baba fire Maritimo to a 2-1 home win over Rio Ave. 

Braga 3-1 Gil Vicente

In the main game of the day, Braga hosted local rivals Gil Vicente in a competitive fixture for the first time since 2006. Despite their geographic proximity, these two clubs are more friends than foes, and a number of players have moved between them in recent times.  

The atmosphere was thus raucous, but with none of the malice that accompanies the Minho derby between Braga and Guimaraes – coming up next weekend. Indeed, the crowd were perhaps the most engaging feature of the first half, with neither side in particularly fluent form. Lima was the bright spot, and might have opened the scoring on 14 minutes, but his close-range effort after Helder Barbosa’s knockdown was mishit, and went wide.

Lima came closer eight minutes later, forcing Adriano into a smart save low at his left-hand post. Alan did well to find space for a cross and Lima directed his header well, but the summer signing from Uniao Madeira was equal to his effort. The remainder of the half passed without any great incident, with Gil effectively denying Braga’s creative players time to establish a rhythm.

The second half began in similarly circumspect fashion, and just before the hour mark, Leonardo Jardim made the substitution that would change the game – throwing Nuno Gomes on in place of Mossoro. Within two minutes Gomes drew a save out of Adriano, and a minute later the veteran hitman gave Braga the lead, lashing home from close range after Lima’s strike was parried directly into his path. 

Gil were reduced to ten men three minutes later, when Eder hauled down Lima on the edge of the penalty box with the Brazilian clean through. The straight red card was a hammer blow to Gil, and Helder Barbosa removed any lingering doubts over the result ten minutes later, when he gently lifted the ball over Adriano, after latching on to Lima’s incisive through ball. Gomes was once again involved – it was his diagonal run which created the space for Lima and Barbosa to capitalise on.

There was one final flurry of action before the full-time whistle. Substitute Roberto forced Quim into an excellent stop with a powerful header, before Gil were handed a lifeline when Paulo Vinicius was adjudged to have handled inside the box. Claudio stroked home to make it 2-1, but Gomes applied the finishing touch with virtually the last kick of the game, rifling a low shot beyond Adriano from the right-hand side of the area.

[1-0] Nuno Gomes 62’
[2-0] Helder Barbosa 73’
[2-1] Claudio 90’
[3-1] Nuno Gomes 92’

Beira-Mar 0-1 Uniao de Leiria

In the early kick-off, Vitor Pontes got off to the perfect start as Leiria head coach, as his men picked up a vital away win at Beira-Mar, thanks to a strike from Jose Shaffer, on loan from Benfica.

In a low-key encounter, it was always going to take a moment of magic to break the deadlock, and the Argentine obliged in the 69th minute, hammering a shot home from distance. Leiria were reduced to ten men when substitute Patrick was dismissed in injury time, but held out for their first points of the campaign.

[0-1] Shaffer 70’

Olhanense 1-2 Feirense

Feirense continued to defy pre-season expectations, defeating Olhanense at the Estadio Jose Arcanjo in an eventful encounter. Dauto Faquira’s side are usually strong at home, but found themselves a goal behind after just sixteen minutes thanks to Fernando Varela’s headed effort.

Olhanense’s woes continued when Fernando Alexandre received his second yellow just before half-time, but they emerged from the interval looking revitalised, and Salvador Agra’s 57th-minute equaliser came as little surprise.

The home side ought to have gone on to take all three points, but were wasteful, and Ludovic (pictured) punished them in the 83rd minute, ensuring that Feirense’s impressive start to the season continues. Mexer put the icing on an unappetising cake for Olhanense when he was dismissed just before the final whistle.

[0-1] Varela 17’
[1-1] Agra 57’
[1-2] Ludovic 83’

Maritimo 2-1 Rio Ave

Inspired once again by Senegalese centre-forward Baba, Maritimo picked up their second consecutive victory with a 2-1 home win over Rio Ave, who slid into the embryonic relegation zone.  

Baba opened the scoring after a swift counter-attack led by Olberdam, tapping home from close range. But Maritimo’s lead lasted only four minutes, before Robson upended Yazalde inside the penalty box and Joao Tomas coolly despatched the spot-kick.

The scores stayed level until the 58th minute, when Baba rose above the flat-footed Jefferson to head home from Roberto Sousa’s free-kick. Rio Ave pressed for an equaliser, with Porto loanee Kelvin a lively presence, but Maritimo prevailed, and Carlos Brito’s men remain in search of their first victory this season.

[1-0] Baba 13’
[1-1] Joao Tomas 17’
[2-1] Baba 58’
Ben Shave
Comments (10)
LOL Karl
10 Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:34
I don't mean it as a dig on Braga.
But it's going to take a lot for Braga to be on the "big 3", and I don't think there's room for a "big 4" in Portugal.
That doesn't mean, Braga won't and can't be perenial contenders for the league and CL spots.

Maybe I dislike Braga so much due to them sharing the Arsenalistas tag with their EPL counterparts.
Hate Arsenal and Wenger and AVP and...

Let me add, that me not liking them, doesn't mean I don't respect them and acknowledge what they have accomplished. By them, I mean Braga.
just one small thing..
9 Tuesday, 13 September 2011 22:13
I enjoy it more everytime I see the comment "the big 3"
8 Monday, 12 September 2011 21:02
I've been saying all summer, and will continue to repeat myself, that any team that underestimates Braga this year may find themselves on the losing end of a game.


Also, even as a Nuno Gomes and Benfica fan, I think Braga and Benfica (oh this hurts to say) both got the better end of the deal. Artur has turned out to be monumental (one of if not the best signing of the offseason, and that's saying a lot looking at Benfica this year) while Nuno... well, he's always going to be Nuno Golos, but at least he gets pitch time at Braga.
Some Thoughts
7 Monday, 12 September 2011 12:54
Great job by Braga. I'm happy for Nuno, and glad that he is getting looks. Clearly, he will be able to help Braga contend on all fronts. They also did a great job stifeling Gil Vicente, who have been impressive in their own right.
Let me add that I am surprised with Braga's start. I thought they would have struggled in the beggining of the season, and that hasn't been the case. All kuddos to the job Jardim has done. Also, a better crowd, 13,222, for this one.
Next weeks game vs Guimaraes should be a howler.

I will be really interested in how Maritimo goes from here. They have three very winable games, the next three weeks. I know that Guimaraes in two weeks time is not easy, Maritimo is home with Guimaraes coming off the always tough match with Braga.
Maritimo could put some distance between itself and the teams currently below them.

I can't believe that Feirense actually scored 2 goals. Only have 3 total, so far this season.

Lastly, let me add that there were plenty of yellow cards and players getting sent off all throughout the league. I'm sure that presidents from all over the league are screaming about questionable calls. Unfortunately everyone concentrates on the "Big 3", and the lesser teams get no love.
6 Monday, 12 September 2011 04:01
Great to see Nuno playing and contributing nicely.
5 Sunday, 11 September 2011 23:26
In Guimaraes the games last 60 minutes.. Because of work I only arrived after 60 minutes today.. a couple of minutes after arriving and after being told that I hadn't missed muchthe fireworks began. This Braga team can play some great football.. It's going to be a good season.. and still with some players to come in.. This team has a lot to give and could well push for a Champions League spot... It's gonna be a good year!
Nuno is clutch
4 Sunday, 11 September 2011 23:15
Speed is not a factor when you're talking about one of Portugal's all-time greats. Watch him score more goals than Saviola this season.

Forca Nuno!
Nuno "The Great" Gomes
3 Sunday, 11 September 2011 22:11
The man is class he still has the touch. Benfica is going to miss him.
Good luck Nuno.
2 Sunday, 11 September 2011 22:06
to Admin; Sorry, it's offtop, but in the Russian Premier-League Lokomotiv Moscow had won over Zenit 4:2 and the two winning goals were scored by portuguese defender Manuel Da Costa. That's about portuguese players from foreign leagues.
Phewwwwwww Thank godness we didnt need 3 penalties to win
1 Sunday, 11 September 2011 21:06
Barbosa and Nuno Gomes on fire!

Forca Magico!

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