Result: Penafiel 1-3 SPORTING

Sporting were knocked out of the Taça da Liga despite victory against Penafiel due to overall goals scored.

It’s a cruel end to the competition for Sporting who had played so well against Porto in the first round of games and due to the controversial nature of Porto’s victory against Marítimo last night.

For the game Leonardo Jardim made a few changes. Marcelo Boeck, as usual, started in goal. Eric Dier started in defence along side Maurício, Vítor Silva took the place of André Martins in midfield and Carlos Mané started again.

It was the home side who took the lead with a superb strike from Aldaír that Marcelo Boeck’s stretched hand could not stop from stopping after just 19 minutes in the game gone.

With Sporting needing goals Leonardo Jardim made a tactical change in the 37th minute bringing on Wilson Eduardo for Vítor Silva.

Sporting levelled just before half-time. Fredy Montero was fouled on the edge of the area. The Colombian’s freekick hit the wall but William Carvalho was the first on to the ball and cross for Carlos Mané to head in from close range. Two goals in two starts now for the 19-year old winger.

The away side pushed more after the break to try and get ahead and, eventually, it was the substitute Wilson Eduardo who found the net.

Some good play by Fredy Montero found André Carrillo on the left wing. The Peruvian’s excellent cross found Wilson Eduardo, playing almost as a second-striker, to latch on to the end and put Sporting in front.

The third goal game as a result of penalty when Eric Dier, making a surging run, was brought down in the box. Adrien Silva stepped up to make it 3-1 and ensure the win for Sporting even though it did not turn out to be enough in the end.

Sporting club president Bruno de Carvalho certain had plenty to say after the game about how things turned on on the night: “I want to congratulate Sporting’s players, because they did what they could to quality for the next round. I also what to thank the fans who came to the game. This isn’t a peculiar situation, it is just the usual stuff. Sporting and a few other clubs felt the need to put together some ideas for the remodelling of Portuguese football. Coincidences like this keep happening and we are going to pretend that we don’t notice them. When the fourth goal in the FC Porto-Penafiel game was off-side; when Sporting had qualified at the end of the game and you see us then eliminated due to a penalty that only certain people could see, then you have to ask questions. Those are the kinds of coincidences that happen in football, because we let them. The sort of things that happened today are what make people say that football isn’t played on the pitch. When things are already decided before games have even kicked off, there is no point making proposals.”

Leonardo Jardim, as usual, was a little more conservation in his assessment of the night: “We won, but it is a shame that Sporting has not achieved one of our objectives. Looking at the supremacy that we showed against FC Porto, the only down side is that we didn’t score. We won 7 points in total, but we didn’t qualify for the next round. Now we have to focus on the League.”

SPORTING XI: Marcelo Boeck; Cédric Soares (YC), Maurício (YC), Eric Dier, Jefferson; William Carvalho, Adrien Silva (Scored, 82′), Vítor Silva (Wilson Eduardo, 37′, Scored, 68′); André Carrillo (YC) (Ricardo Esgaio, 87′), Carlos Mané (Scored, 44′) (Diego Capel, 64′), Fredy Montero
Substitutes Not Used: Rui Patrício, Rúben Semedo, André Martins, Gérson Magrão

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