Sporting will have the honour to kick-off the 2007/08 edition of the Portuguese League playing home against Académica de Coimbra this Friday evening.
Here is a few stuff translated from today's O Jogo about that game as well as about the way we have started the league in the last few years.
It's a 31 for the students
by António Bernardino, translated from O Jogo
If football was ruled by the student "arts", it would be possible to imagine Académica getting hold of any kind of trickery, technically designed as memory aids, to better remember the best formula to hold Liedson. This because the team from Coimbra, the first opponent of Sporting at the start of the 2007/08 edition of the Bwin Liga, is "only" the favourite target of the Lions' forward, in what concerns our domestic football, having already suffered eight goals in four seasons.
In the League or in the Cup, the striker from Bahia has been a real 31 for Pedro Roma, that only twice came out approved from the exams in front of Liedson. In fact, Briosa's goalkeeper is the number one on the list of those more fustigated by the Lions' striker, although he have managed to leave Alvalade twice without suffering any goal by his "black beast".
With a Sporting vs Académica booked for next Friday, in Alvalade, we expect another duel between Liedson and Roma. One more opportunity for Sporting's goleador to increase his tally faing Briosa, but also for Pedro Roma, on the other side, to try and reach a positive mark in front of the goals "teacher". In the two ocasions that Liedson did not manage to beat the students' goalkeeper, the Lions also did not win those games for the League. They happened both in Alvalade (2004/05 and 2005/06), with a draw (0-0) and a defeat (0-1), respectively.
In conclusion, in the nine games against Académica in the last four seasons - adding the games for the League and for Taça de Portugal -, Liedson failed the students seven times, with eight goals scored.
Liedson scored two against Gil Vicente in 2004/05
In the four seasons that he already counts in Portugal - he arrived in Alvalade in 2003/04 -, Liedson only once managed to score in the opening game of the League. It happened in the 2004/05 season, against Gil Vicente, in a game where he scored two of the three goals with which Sporting beat the team from Barcelos (3-2). A decisive contribution of the number 31, on a night where he managed to add the fact of being involved in the other Lions' goal, pressing Marcos António, a player of Gil Vicente, in a move where the Brazilian defender ended up introducing the ball in his own net. Regarding the other seasons, he did not partiipate on the start of the 2003/04 season - he arrived before the third round, whereas on the other seasons he "loaned" his goalscoring credits to Rogério and Deivid (2005/06), and to Nani and Deivid (2006/07). Nevertheless, having in mind the tradition with Briosa and the form demonstrated by the Baiano during the pre-season, Académica is a target...with more charm.
Heroes at the start
Five of “Manel”
Doing justice to his condition of goleador, Manuel Fernandes (the real one!) started the season scoring five goals, on a 6-0 victory over Penafiel. The captain was inspired and destroyed the enemy.
He was one of the last reinforcements to arrive and one of those that created more expectations, taking advantage of the first game of the season, against F Porto, to conquer the fans with a triumphant goal.
He was never very much loved in Alvalade, but he left through the big door, thanks to two goals against Boavista, on a game where he jumped from the bench to solve the situation. Afterwards he went to Fenerbahçe.
Vilains at the start
Milorad Pavic started the League without managing to guide the team towards victory against Boavista. 0-2 loss, in what was a bad omen for a disapointing season.
A useless gesture lead Duscher to be sent-off, during the second half of the game against Setúbal, when the team was fighting to score after the draw, and thus became the vilain.
Sporting started winning in the old Antas Stadium, but the sending off of Amunike...and the goals of Domingos (2) did not allow the team to score any point.