Following the international break and the early rounds of the Taça de Portugal, Primeira Liga football has taken somewhat of a backseat role in recent weeks, but a grand comeback saw no less than 14 goals being shared between the traditional ‘Big Three’.

League leaders FC Porto were the first to take to the stage, dispatching Paços de Ferreira with ease in a 6-1 victory at the Estádio do Dragão.

Benfica followed suit with an important 3-1 win away to Desportivo das Aves before Sporting bagged five goals to Chaves’ one on Sunday night, concluding an untouched picture at the top of the Liga NOS table. As always, PortuGOAL brings you all the top action.

 

FC Porto 6-1 Paços de Ferreira

Life in the UEFA Champions League hasn’t quite gone to plan after Porto’s second defeat in three games last Tuesday, although the domestic scene has lent solace to the talents that they possess.

Visiting the Dragons’ were Paços de Ferreira, who haven’t been as fortunate in the Primeira Liga this season, as Sérgio Conceição’s men came out of the blocks to put the Castores in their place early through Ricardo Pereira’s opener in the 3rd minute.

Welthon equalised with a low drive from range just three minutes later, but Porto would again find themselves in the lead shortly after the quarter-of-an-hour mark through Felipe, the central defender popping up in a centre-forward’s position to tuck home a second for the hosts.

With the attacking trio of Yacine Brahimi, Vincent Aboubakar and Moussa Marega all combining well, the latter went on to overcome Mário Felgueiras in the 25th minute with a cool side-footed finish from inside the box, as the side from Mata Real began to sink without trail in the face of Porto’s might.

Marega pushed for a brace and landed Porto’s fourth with an outstretched leg from Ricardo’s cross, with Felgueiras caught scrambling in the 33rd minute in a futile attempt to keep it out on the line.

Porto’s dominance carried over into the second half, with both Danilo Pereira and Marega wasting great opportunities to add to the score-line before Jesús Corona eventually did in the 65th minute, guiding a side-footed volley into an empty net.

It was through the Mexican’s perseverance that Porto would find a sixth goal, as he battled for possession inside Paços de Ferreira’s area prior to setting Aboubakar up for the tap-in and adding the finishing touch to a 6-1 win.

 

Desp. Aves 1-3 Benfica

Important games come thick and fast for those playing catch-up, with the trip to lowly Desportivo das Aves nothing other than a must-win for an under pressure Benfica.

With shots flying at either end, the Eagles would earn a more certain way to break the deadlock after Eduardo Salvio was brought down inside the box for a penalty - one that would be claimed and finished by Jonas in the 29th minute.

Holding onto their slender lead en route to half-time, Benfica came out and found a second goal in due course following the interval, as Haris Seferovic tapped in Salvio’s hard-earned cutback from close range in the 50th minute.

Rodrigo Defendi pulled a goal back for Aves in the 76th minute from a near-post header, but all hope of a momentous equaliser from the newly-promoted side was extinguished just three minutes later, as Jonas, again from the spot, pulled Benfica further ahead to claim a 3-1 victory.

 

Sporting 5-1 Chaves

Such was the frequency with which Bas Dost managed to find the back of the net last season that onlookers had already began an inquest into why the Dutchman hasn’t been as prolific in the current campaign, with September 8th being the last time the ex-Wolfsburg man had cause for celebration.

In a bid to add more goals to his side, Jorge Jesus turned to the inclusion of Daniel Podence, alongside Dost, for the reception of Chaves, following a week in which the Portuguese forward also made the headlines with a not-so-sly Instagram post that appeared to allude to his lack of playing time.

Dost was off the mark early, not via the big man, little man combination with Podence that many had envisioned, but rather through the simplicity of a standard set-piece, as the Netherlands international took the space afforded to him to head a corner past the goalkeeper in the 6th minute.

Hungry for more, Sporting’s target man would go on to double his account for the day in the 15th minute, with Podence working the channels and picking his strike-partner out with an inch-perfect side-footed volley towards the far-post, met once more by the head of Dost.

From goalscorer to goal creator, Dost acted as the focal point for the Lions’ third of the game on the brink of half-time, splitting the Chaves defence with a pass through for Gelson Martins which the winger squared selflessly for Marcos Acuña’s tap-in.

Sporting’s Argentine import was the source for goal number four, as Cristiano Piccini’s run in-field was taken over by Dost and played across to the former Racing Club man, thrashing an effort in at the near post and increasing the hosts’ advantage on the hour-mark.

Dost completed his fine performance with another hat-trick for his collection in a green and white shirt, receiving the service from Piccini’s back-post cross in the 75th minute to nod in a fifth.

Davidson then emerged to add a consolation goal right on the buzzer for Chaves, slaloming in and out of Sporting’s snoozing defence before dinking Rui Patrício at his far-post and concluding the score at 5-1 to the Lisbon outfit.

By Patrick Ribeiro

Matchday 9

Estoril 0-3 Boavista

Feirense 1-0 Rio Ave

Vit. Setúbal 3-1 Marítimo

FC Porto 6-1 P. Ferreira

Tondela 2-0 Belenenses

Desp. Aves 1-3 Benfica

Sporting 5-1 Chaves

 

Monday 23rd October

Moreirense – Sp. Braga

Vit. Guimarães – Portimonense

 

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5 out of 5 stars

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  • Not much to say after handing out a thumping like that. Herrera and Felipe were the pick of the Porto players and Telles got forward a lot. Jose Sa should prob have done better for the goal but we’ll stick with him. Poor Iker. Its like being back at Madrid.
    The second half I found to be more entertaining as PAÇOS didn’t just put 10 behind the ball and stay on their 18 yard box.
    Shame Marega didn’t perform like that against Leipzig.

    We all need to step it up in Europe.

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  • Rated 5 out of 5 stars

    Amazing performance by Sporting! Great to see Podence fully fit and flying again he was as dynamic and explosive as ever and definitely made a big impact in Sporting's attacking play, the chemistry with Bas Dost was definitely there. Fantastic run and cross for Bas Dost's second goal the diving header. And he also made that great chip pass to beat the back line freeing Bas for a great chance one v one with goal keeper. Podence is an awesome player, love his pacey dearing attacking play defenders always have a hard time dealing with him, definitely gives that extra unpredictable and cutting edge to our attacks in the final third.

    That being said I also like Bruno Fernandes playing up top in support of Bas Dost, but great thing with Bruno Fernandes is he can play center midfield as well which he did this weekend and did great as well! Love this lineup cause it gives us many attacking threats and great creativity! Great thing too is Bruno Fernandes' fitness has improved since he came to Sporting, and he's now actually been one of the players covering the most ground in a game, I think last couple games he ran the most distance, this is great for his game as when playing the center midfield role you really need great fitness and stamina and Bruno Fernandes has definltey been showing he's not just a flashy player but also a hard working one. All this bodes well, so that this lineup can continue to play, because to me this is the best lineup for Sporting. Podence is too good to sit and Bruno Fernandes is too good to sit.

    Bas Dost was incredible and is back to his best, he was lethal in front of goal and did great in his link up play and showed great vision with his passing as well. His first two goals were awesome headers, the second one the diving header was beautiful! That through ball he released Gelson with was magic as well. Props to Bas Dost as well because even he has become a better player at Sporting. He's not just a finisher idly waiting up top, but he's been great getting involved bringing the wingers midfielders into play, and his touches and passes have shown great skill too!

    Also great to see Acuna getting on the scoresheet and scoring his first Sporting league goals. Last post I made i was saying I wanted him to be a little more potent and dynamic attacking wise, to compliment his already hard working industrious team play. I know he's capable of this as the last season with Racing his statistics proved that scoring something like 9 goals and 13 assists in 25 league games. We've already seen he's great at crossing and assisting, and now he's begun to show that he can score as well. The guy has an awesome left foot! There was another play before his two goals where for a good 10 minutes he was drifting inside and playing very centrally, when Gelson I believed layed off a pass for him in the center couple yards outside the box and he struck a fierce shot to the bottom left corner of the goal, had the defender not got that slight deflection on it it would have definitely gone in instead of gone for the corner. Eventually he got his two goals the second taken one time with a great shot to the bottom left corner. Great to see Acuna has come into his own as well.

    All this is good for our side Sporting as all these attacking outlets give us a lot of strength and unpredictability. Gelson while he had a pretty good game was off in the final third and he could have gotten a goal and another assist at least. So I'm sure he'll be back to his best confident self soon. With all these players attacking the goal Sporting is an awesome side right now! Whats good for the players too is that they showed under the highest pressure against two of Europes very best in Barca and Juve that they can hold their own and I believe all this has bolstered their confidence and reassurred them that they are doing great work and are a very very good side! They came out this weekend and absolutely showed that with a totally dominant awesome display vs Chaves!

    That late goal conceded was the one annoying thing and that happened because Bruno Cesar cannot defend lol. He was the one who lost his man with a pathetic attempt at tackling allowing him to cut inside and go on to score. I'm not too frustrated by it, because by now with the quality of players the team now has he's third choice there anyway lol. Had Fabio Coentrao still been on the field that goal would totally have been avoided. Fabio would have stopped that, he's been defending very very well as we all know he can, and this game he made 80 minutes which was a great achievement as well. His stamina is getting better and better and thats great news for Sporting and Portugal.

    Gotta mention Piccini as well! Man he has been playing awesome game after game! Piccini is a really good right back man, great defensively and offensively and has proven to be such a good signing for us! The guy is a top right back, a great footballer all around great technically good skill helps the team so much. In modern football full backs are very important and pivotal positions they contribute a lot to the effectiveness of the offensive plays and as well of course the defensive work and Piccini has been proving this.

    All in all great work Sporting! Let's keep it up! :D

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