Preview: Estoril Praia vs. Boavista

Estoril Praia and Boavista will play out their rearranged Primeira Liga fixture on Thursday evening.

Both sides can take advantage of the additional match to aid their respective ambitions at either end of the table.

Match preview

Estoril Praia's Arthur celebrates scoring their first goal with Andre Franco, Coly Racine and teammates on January 8, 2022

Estoril come into the tie in dire need of a win having lost their last three matches, all by a solitary goal to nil.

That has further extended another unwanted record of just one win in 14 matches across all competitions, leaving Nelson Verissimo’s job in danger.

Their only win in that time came against one of their toughest opponents, high-flying Casa Pia, so it is evident to see that they are losing too many games against their relegation rivals.

Recent defeats to Famalicao and Maritimo have not only seen Estoril drop down the table, but it has given belief to those two sides who are also fighting for survival.

Form at the Estadio Antonio Coimbra da Mota has been a big problem for Verissimo this season, as only bottom-placed Pacos Ferreira have picked up fewer points on home soil.

With this being a game in hand though, it represents a fantastic opportunity for Estoril to pull away from trouble, as they could extend the gap between themselves and the relegation zone to seven points with a win.

While Estoril will look to use this match to strengthen their survival bid, visitors Boavista can help improve their chances of European qualification should they come out on top.

Rodrigo Abascal in action for Boavista on August 27, 2022

They are currently just five points behind Casa Pia who occupy the final UEFA Europa Conference League spot at present.

Just one defeat since returning from the World Cup break has seen them join the fight for Europe, having

won a very respectable eight points from their five games in that time.

Their current position is slightly surprising given that only the bottom two have a worse defensive record, but the form of Yusupha Njie in attack has countered any deficiencies at the back.

The Gambian attacker scored the winner against Gil Vicente and netted twice in a 4-2 win over Portimonense recently.

Now in his sixth season at Boavista, Njie has already beaten his best scoring tally for a season at the club, with eight goals this campaign.

Team News

Estoril Praia players huddle before the match on January 8, 2022

Joao Gamboa returned from a muscle injury ahead of schedule for Estoril in their match against Vitoria Guimaraes at the weekend.

It also saw new acquisition Rafik Guitane make his debut for the club off the bench, after a late move from Reims in the January window.

Two more new players who could be involved in the side in the coming weeks are Allison and Caue, who have both arrived on free transfers from Brazilian football.

Boavista had an extremely quiet window and may not see much change to their lineup here.

Filipe Ferreira will miss this one with an injury that has kept him out since October, while Adalberto Penaranda is still yet to make his debut since joining from Watford in August.

Sebastian Perez will return after serving a suspension in their draw with Santa Clara for accumulating five bookings.

Estoril Praia possible starting lineup:
Leite; Delos, Vital, Pedro Alvaro, Joaozinho; Gamboa, Geraldes, Gouveia, Joao Carvalho, Guitane; Cassiano

Boavista possible starting lineup:
Rafael Bracali; Malheiro, Sasso, Abascal, Onyemaechi; Vukotic, Camara, Perez; Salvador Agra, Njie, Mangas

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