Rio Ave 1-2 FC Porto
FC Porto have made it three wins from three Primeira Liga games after completing a late turnaround versus Rio Ave away from home, this Monday, courtesy of 11th-hour heroics from Iván Marcano.
Having edged the first half, the Dragons found themselves a goal down five minutes into the second period following Costinha’s penalty conversion.
Sérgio Conceição’s men struggled to crack Rio Ave down following the opener before a 91st minute Galeno penalty, trailed by a successive late winner from Marcano, turned the game on its head at the Estádio dos Arcos.
On a mission to keep their 100% win ratio alive, Porto took to the Vila do Conde on a particularly proud day for captain Pepe, becoming the oldest player to grace the Primeira Liga after surpassing the record formerly held by Beira Mar legend Fary.
Omitted for the occasion was new signing Alan Varela, finally available to star in Porto colours but left on the bench by Conceição, opting for a midfield pivot of Stephen Eustáquio and Nico González instead.
Rio Ave had the visitors under some early pressure with a couple of sightings of Diogo Costa’s goal, but it was at the other end where the net was rippled first.
Played through inside the box, Mehdi Taremi was on hand to give Porto the lead in the 12th minute but quickly saw his goal chalked off against his former side for a pinpoint offside call, catching the Iranian striker seven centimetres beyond the Rio Ave backline.
The Dragons persevered up top and were rewarded with a premium opportunity to break the deadlock, set-up by Galeno’s pull-back before Pepê, racing onto the pass, managed to sky his effort from approximately 10 yards out in the 20th minute.
Rio Ave recalibrated their organisation, taking the two sides through to the half-time whistle with the scores locked at 0-0.
Emerging from the break, it was Rio Ave once more who looked the sharpest, this time earning a fantastic opportunity to inflict pain upon Porto after Emmanuel Boateng nipped in ahead of Galeno’s desperate challenge inside of the box to win a penalty, as both scrambled for a rebound off the post.
Right-back Costinha was the man trusted from the 12-yard-mark, making no mistake despite Diogo Costa guessing which side the defender would go, as Rio Ave claimed the game’s first goal in the 50th minute.
Pepe tonight becomes the oldest ever outfield player to play in Portugal's top flight at 40 years and 183 days https://t.co/no1yhfoe1u— Tom Kundert (@PortuGoal1) August 28, 2023
Porto chopped and changed their options in hope of finding a route back into the game with one of their substitutions, Gonçalo Borges, striking gold when winning a penalty as late as the 88th minute, courtesy of a trailing Costinha leg.
Galeno stepped up against his old team and converted his penalty to make it 1-1, just as the officials announced an additional nine minutes of football to be played going into stoppage time.
The scene was perfectly set for Marcano, for a second game running, to rescue all three points for Conceição’s Porto side with a late winner, making it three hard-earned wins from three league games for the Dragons.
By Patrick Ribeiro
Rio Ave XI: Magrão - Josué Sá (Patrick William, 75’), Aderllan Santos, Renato Pantalon - Fábio Ronaldo, Guga (Ventura, 93’), Amine (Vítor Gomes, 64’), João Graça (Leonardo Ruiz, 64’), Costinha - Joca (Zé Manuel, 75’), Emmanuel Boateng
FC Porto XI: Diogo Costa - Zaidu Sanusi (Wendell, 63’), Iván Marcano, Pepe, João Mário (Gonçalo Borges, 78’) - Galeno, Nico González (André Franco, 78’), Stephen Eustáquio, Pepê - Mehdi Taremi (Fran Navarro, 78’), Toni Martínez (Danny Namaso, 63’)
[1-0] Costinha, 52’
[1-1] Galeno, 91’
[1-2] Iván Marcano, 94’