Portuguese Superliga Preview: FC Porto–Sporting Lisbon
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Sporting's ex-Porto man Mario Jardel (Allsport)
The Portuguese "Super-Classico" is set to take place this weekend as Sporting Lisbon travel to Porto in what should be a cracking match.
The game takes place on Saturday but the war of words has already begun. Porto Manager Jose Mourinho has warned the official for the match, Lucilio Baptista, to watch out for the Lisbon players' tendencies to dive. "Sporting has a tendency to create fouls that don't exist. Last year we had Costinha wrongfully sent off because of a Joao Pinto dive." Sporting's manager Laszlo Boloni countered by saying that "perhaps Mourinho would like to referee the match."
FC Porto currently sits at the top of the table nine points clear of 2nd place Benfica. Sporting are looking to get back into the title race at Porto's expense, as they currently stand in 3rd place but are a distant 11 points back of the leaders.
Sporting Lisbon currently have a number of fitness worries including Mario Jardel, Cristiano Ronaldo and Sa Pinto all of which have been included in the squad for the Porto clash. Mario Jardel has not been his old self this season as he has scored only twice this season. Expect Boloni to start Jardel in hopes he can snap out of his Superliga scoring slump against Porto. Look for Sporting to probably line up in their traditional 4-4-2 formation. Romanian international Marian Niculae will not play for Sporting as he is still out with an injury.
Jose Mourinho has stated that Porto will not be playing for the draw. "We will not alter our style of play, we haven't lost a game all season and there is no need for a change in tactics." That being said, expect Porto to assign at least one player to mark Mario Jardel, look for this duty to go to Costinha. However, goalkeeper Vitor Baia has warned that Sporting Lisbon boasts much more than just Mario Jardel in their arsenal. "If we worry about Jardel too much we will lose. They have other players who can score goals, Jardel has not been a factor this season for them." Newly signed Marco Ferreira could see some action for Porto but will likely start on the bench.
Sporting (4-4-2): (G) Tiago (DL) Rui Jorge, (DC)Quiroga, (DC) Contreras (DR) Rui Bento (DCM) Paulo Bento (ACM) Joao Pinto (RM) Pedro Barbosa (LM) Ricardo Quaresma (F) Mario Jardel (F) Kutuzov
Porto (4-5-1): (G) Vitor Baia(DL) Nuno Valente (DC) Jorge Costa (DC) Pedro Emanuel (DR) Paulo Ferreira (DCM) Costinha (ACM) Deco (CM) Alenitchev (LM) Maniche (RM) Capucho (F) Postiga
can u guys tell me how's quaresma been playing this season?