Drama and persistence in 2-1 win over CS Marítimo
14 May, 2023
A thrilling finale has a deserved result for Sporting CP
Sporting Clube de Portugal fought back to beat CS Marítimo 2-1 on Liga Portugal Matchday 32, in a match that featured a thrilling finale and striker Paulinho covering in goal.
Coach Rúben Amorim made three changes to the starting lineup from the team that beat Paços de Ferreira: Gonçalo Inácio, Hidemasa Morita and Nuno Santos made way for Matheus Reis, Arthur Gomes and Paulinho. Youssef Chermiti was the major absentee from the squad, missing out due to lower back pain.
From the opening whistle, Sporting CP commanded play and set the pace. However, CS Marítimo sprung a surprise in the tenth minute, when they took advantage of a mistake to send Vítor Costa free down the left wing. The left-back closed in on Antonio Adán and struck inside the far post to open the scoring at Alvalade, with what proved to be their only attempt on goal in the first half.
The goal served to make CS Marítimo's ultra-defensive plan even more intense, as they limited the space available to Sporting CP in the final third.
In the 14th minute, Paulinho headed wide and, shortly afterwards, a good interplay between Marcus Edwards and Héctor Bellerín ended with the latter trying to set up his teammates in the area, but goalkeeper Marcelo Carné rushed onto the ball.
The CS Marítimo goalkeeper was again called upon half an hour into the game, when he saved Paulinho's shot. Before that, Ousmane Diomande had shot over, with Arthur Gomes doing the same in the 33rd minute.
Just before the break, Sporting CP could have scored from a Gomes cross, as Bellerín knocked on for Pedro Gonçalves -who could not finish the move due to the presence of an opposition player.
For the second half, three substitutions were made for Sporting CP: Matheus Reis, Bellerín and Gomes were replaced by Hidemasa Morita, Nuno Santos and Gonçalo Inácio. The attitude shown by CS Marítimo remained the same, as they looked to pack the midfield and defence.
As the task of breaking through that wall of 11 players was frustrating and difficult, Amorim made more changes when Fatawu came on for Francisco Trincão, then Ricardo Esgaio relieved Ousmane Diomande.
In the 65th minute, Gonçalves appeared in an excellent position, but fumbled his attempt to control the ball. On the conclusion of a counterattack, Manuel Ugarte was just a few centimeters from scoring, and the same thing happened to Marcus Edwards as the game drew close to its final quarter of an hour.
The goal finally arrived five minutes from time, as Gonçalves feinted an opponent and tried to set up his teammates, with Matheus Costa deflecting the ball into his own net.
In the third minute of added time, Edwards crossed to the far post, where Paulinho headed on and Sebastián Coates popped up to finish and finally put Sporting CP 2-1 in front.
However, the match was far from over, as CS Marítimo put another ball into the net off a move in which Nuno Santos was fouled. Confusion broke out, with several cards shown -including a red for Antonio Adán – and several shoves between players took place.
After consulting VAR, referee Tiago Martins ruled out the goal, but upheld the sending off for Adán, forcing Paulinho to go in goal.
The drama finally ended, after many long minutes of additional time, and Sporting CP earned the three points. Next up is the derby against SL Benfica.
Sporting CP: Antonio Adán [GK], Ousmane Diomande (Ricardo Esgaio, 64'), Sebastián Coates [C], Matheus Reis (Hidemasa Morita, 46'), Héctor Bellerín (Nuno Santos, 46'), Manuel Ugarte, Pedro Gonçalves, Arthur Gomes (Gonçalo Inácio, 46'), Marcus Edwards, Francisco Trincão (Fatawu, 57') and Paulinho.