Successive victories were on the cards for all of our ‘Big Three’ clubs coming out of Matchday Two of the Primeira Liga, with Benfica being the first to set the tone away to Boavista on Saturday night.

The Eagles, fuelled by goals from Facundo Ferreyra and Pizzi, took all three points at the Bessa over Boavista, meanwhile back in the Portuguese capital, a Nani double set Sporting on level terms with their rivals ahead of next Saturday’s Lisbon Derby, as the Lions took down Vitória de Setúbal with a 2-1 victory at home.

In joining the two Lisbon outfits at the top of the table, FC Porto left it late, despite having led by 2-0, with a 95th minute Alex Telles penalty snatching a 3-2 win against Belenenses on Sunday night. Here’s how the action unfolded.

 

Boavista 0-2 Benfica

Coming into this week’s fixture, Benfica were tasked with defeating a Boavista side that they had only beaten once in their last four meetings, with star-man Jonas still out of action through injury.

The hosts should’ve taken the lead early on through Federico Falcone at the back-post but it was Ferreyra at the other end, deputising for Jonas, who landed the game’s first blow in the 35th minute, robbing the ball inside the box before picking his spot with a slotted finish.

[Watch the highlights by clicking on the screen below]

Benfica’s 1-0 lead stretched into the second period, with Pizzi on hand to add to his hat-trick from last week with a placed finish deep inside the area, taking Rui Vitória’s men to a two-goal-advantage past the hour-mark.

Pizzi could’ve even nabbed his second when catching the Boavista defence out and racing through on goal in the 89th minute, but Helton’s save proved to be decisive in keeping the score at 2-0 for the visitors come full time.

 

Sporting 2-1 Vit. Setúbal

In Sporting’s first official outing of the season at the Alvalade, marking the homecoming of Nani and his boss, José Peseiro, hope rested on the sight of back-to-back wins, following last week’s triumph away to Moreirense.

Nani played his role bright and early with a strike from outside of the box catching Cristiano out at his near-post, as the Lions took the lead inside the opening ten minutes. Vitória’s response was prompt, however, after a Romain Salin error between the sticks, as Zequinha popped up to finish into an empty net and make it 1-1 in the 19th minute.

[Watch the highlights by clicking on the screen below]

Inseparable going into half-time, Sporting turned to Fredy Montero and Jovane Cabral for inspiration in the second period and it was again through the latter (for the second consecutive week) that the Green & Whites turned things back in their favour.

Crossing from the right, Cabral was able to find the emerging head of Nani, who made no mistake in powering his header past Cristiano and giving Sporting the lead in the 66th minute, subsequently securing a 2-1 win.

 

Belenenses 2-3 FC Porto

Having arguably been the most impressive of the ‘Big Three’ last week with a 5-0 thrashing over Chaves, Porto were out for more in Belenenses’ borrowed home, the Estádio Nacional.

The title holders quaked in a nervy opening versus Silas’ side before Diogo Leite’s first goal as a senior professional looked to calm the mood in the Porto camp, as his header from a corner in the 25th minute placed the visitors ahead.

[Watch the highlights by clicking on the screen below]

A bad mistake from Dálcio in playing the ball back to his goalkeeper allowed Porto the chance to pick up a second fresh from the interval, as Otávio made his way around the keeper before tucking into an empty net.

Belenenses weren’t done there, however, as Fredy pulled a goal back for his side from the spot less than ten minutes later before Keita, emerging at the back-post with an 83rd minute header, left the game in the balance at 2-2 going into the final stages.

In another twist to the tale, Porto were awarded the chance to pinch all-three points via the spot, which Alex Telles duly delivered amid the controversy in the 95th minute, as the Dragons ran away with a 3-2 win.

By Patrick Ribeiro

Matchday 2

Desp. Aves 2-2 Tondela

Chaves 2-0 Portimonense

Boavista 0-2 Benfica

Sporting 2-1 Vit. Setúbal

Nacional 1-2 Moreirense

Rio Ave 3-1 Marítimo

Belenenses 2-3 FC Porto

Santa Clara 3-3 Sp. Braga

 

Monday 20th August

Vit. Guimarães vs. Feirense