Sporting de Braga won, this Tuesday, Sporting, by 2-1, qualifying this way for the final four of the League Cup, where they now wait, in the comfort of the sofa, for the outcome of the match between Vitória SC and FC Porto, scheduled for this Wednesday.
The lions bid farewell to the League Cup, a competition they had won in the last two seasons, adding this defiance to that of the Portuguese Cup, where they fell 3rd round against Alverca, to look at a championship where they are 19 points behind. Benfica leader. Can we, with all this, talk about a ‘dead’ national lion?
The Alvalade club, in the space of three weeks, certainly lost to the three most difficult opponents on the domestic scene: FC Porto (1-2), Benfica (0-2) and Sporting de Braga (1-2). Accounts made, Sporting increased the number of defeats to 12 this season, surpassing the negative record of the previous two seasons (11 last season, 10 in 2017/18).
The last green and white debacle was due to the inoperability of a lion who was unable to take the reins of the encounter from the first minute. The Minho warriors came out with a sword and soon put themselves at an advantage, through a goal by Ricardo Horta. On the first occasion that Sporting disposed, between the posts, Mathieu ‘on the spearhead’ re-established equality, so that, in a complementary stage, which started with a poisonous header at Matheus’ goal, the next move would tell the story of the final 30 minutes departure.
Bolasie was sent off for a reckless entry over Sequeira in the 61st minute. Silas took Luiz Phellype to put Luís Neto into action and thus stop the offensive of a Sporting de Braga that took advantage of the opponent’s numerical inferiority to do even more damage to the Leonine ship. Trincão, entered in the second half, Galeno and João Novais had sovereign opportunities to break the score, but it was Paulinho, in the 90th minute, to put an end to the match. After that, he also notes the expulsion of Mathieu, after a hard entry on Esgaio, and a sequence of images to be regretted: several players were involved in exchanging pennants and pushes. Among the rain of yellow highlights the direct red shown by Nuno Almeida to Borja.