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Photo by Isabel Silva

Amorim: "It's a game that we have to win"

By Sporting CP
02 Mar, 2024

The coach looks at the meeting with SC Farense on a critical week in Liga Portugal

This Sunday, Sporting Clube de Portugal host SC Farense on Matchday 24 of the Liga Portugal season, and Rúben Amorim gave a press conference to preview the game.

The coach began by commenting on Antonio Adán's injury, before talking about the opposition.

“Adán suffered a thigh injury during a drill when kicking the ball. It's a muscle injury. I hope to have him back this season, as it is a normal injury. Gonçalo Inácio continues to undergo treatment. Francisco Trincão has told me he's fine. He is very strong when it comes to putting up with pain and will be in the squad, as he is in very good form."

"We have two major absentees and we need the support of the fans, mainly due to the quality of SC Farense and their coach. We have to fight for every ball, because they are very strong off the second ball and one of the best teams when it comes to transitions. We have prepared the game aware of the absences, we have adapted the team and we will be prepared to have a good game, but we really need the fans."

Asked about the importance of FC Porto vs. SL Benfica, which will be played on the same day, Amorim explained that the group's only idea is to beat SC Farense and then “go to dinner rested and waiting to see what happens."

“In our minds, we know that we just need to win our games. We just want to get our victory and we know that this will be very difficult. It’s another matchday in which we cannot drop points, and the focus is only on our game," he highlighted.

Asked about an out-of-form SC Farense, the coach stated that "they have a very experienced team and coach. I know they will be prepared and what happened in the past doesn't matter. What matters are the first balls and avoiding transitions that could create instability in our team."

Without Adán, Sporting CP will need another goalkeeper on the bench, and Amorim seems likely to pick Diogo Pinto ahead of fellow 18-year-old Francisco Silva.

“Pinto has the chance to be on the bench and that goes a long way with goalkeeping coach [Jorge] Vital, although the decision will always be mine. It seems to me that Pinto has some advantage in this aspect.”

The starting role will belong to Franco Israel, who played in last Thursday's derby and already has ten appearances in 2023/24.

“He has a lot of personality, which will only give him more confidence. He has shown a lot of maturity in every game he played this season. I really liked his footwork against SL Benfica. He didn't have much of a chance with the goal he conceded. I see a goalkeeper with a high level of performance and a personality ready to take on the position."

Finally, the Sporting CP boss spoke about keeping his players fresh, in particular Viktor Gyökeres.

 “We manage the squad according to the competitions and what we think is essential for the team. There are players who have to suffer, others not so much. The ability to resist injury comes into play. Viktor is a striker who, sometimes, is the only one on the team who can rest a little more when we are in defensive recovery mode. We have to win the game and, therefore, he is an option to play.”