Our prediction for this Portugal Primeira Liga match:
Primeira Liga title will be at stake when Porto and Sporting CP face each other at Estadio do Dragao on Matchday 21. The Dragons are ten points behind the Lions in the standings, meaning that this has to go down as a must-win game for the home side. Porto showed character in 2-1 win over Maritimo, with Otavio scoring the winner from the penalty spot in the third minute of the stoppage time.
Even though Porto will be with one eye on the Champions League clash with Juventus, home win should be considered as the title holders want this win more than the league leaders. Marcano and Mbaye should be the only absentees in the home team. Sporting CP are enjoying a season to remember, with the team winning week by week. The capital club are on the right track to defend their title, but given the importance of Saturday’s clash for the Dragons, home win should be considered. Paulinho is likely to miss the game with injury.
Highlighted Player (Pepe):
Pepe is a professional footballer who plays for Porto as a defender. The Portuguese international played for Maritimo at the start of his senior career and in 2004 he moved to Porto. After making 64 league appearances for the Dragons, he signed a contract with Real Madrid in 2007 and he quickly established himself as a first-team regular.
Pepe is well known for his hard tackles and referees often show him red card. The Real Madrid centre back often played as a defensive midfielder under Jose Mourinho and it has to be noted that he scored five goals in all competitions in the 2013/2014 La Liga campaign.
The Portuguese footballer won his second Champions League trophy with Real Madrid in the 2015/2016 season and later in 2016 he helped A Selecao win the European Championship trophy. Portugal defeated France in the title game and Pepe played an important role in Fernando Santos’ team in the Euro 2016 final. The Real Madrid defender was born in Maceio, Brazil on 26 February, 1983.
Highlighted Team (Sporting):
When it comes to official club members, Portugal giants Sporting Lisbon are the sixth club in the world. Commonly referred to as Leoes which is Portuguese for Lions, Sporting Lisbon were founded in 1906 and are one of the founders of the Primeira Liga.
Sporting’s main rivals are Benfica, with both teams contesting the Lisbon Derby, one of the most fierce ones in Europe. Lions play their games at Estadio Jose Alvelade in front of 50,000 people and are the third most successful club in the country with 46 titles in Portuguese competitions and a title in the European Cup Winner’s Cup from 1963-64.
During this time that is also known as the club’s golden years, Sporting Lisbon won the majority of their 18 Primeira Liga titles in total. Sporting Lisbon boasts the quality football youth academy system which has yielded world-class footballers such as Paulo Furte, Simao Sabrosa, Nani and Ballon d’Or winners Figo and Cristiano Ronaldo.