Sporting players called up to Portugal squads

The latest squad selections for the Portuguese national teams have been announced and, as ever, Sporting are greatly represented.

The biggest news is Gelson Martins’ first called up to the senior squad by Fernando Santos. The winger’s excellent start to the season has not gone unnoticed however Rúben Semedo has not made it to the senior team and is included in the U21 squad.

Portugal: Rui Patrício, William Carvalho, Adrien Silva, Gelson Martins
Portugal U21: Domingos Duarte, Rúben Semedo, Tobias Figueiredo, Pedro Empis, Francisco Geraldes, Daniel Podence
Portugal U19: Abdu Conté, Bruno Paz, Gonçalo Vieira, Pedro Marques

Elsewhere there were players selected for the Women’s side as well. Susana Cova named 5 Sporting players in her U19 team and 3 Sporting players were selected for the U17 team.

Portugal U19: Bárbara Marques, Bruna Costa, Inês Pereira, Neuza Besugo, Tânia Rodrigues
Portugal U17: Joana Martins, Beatriz Conduto, Carolina Monteiro

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Player Ratings: Rio Ave vs. SPORTING

Well, instead of (maybe) writing a match report after last night’s shambles against Rio Ave, I thought it would work out better to give ratings to the players instead of telling you everything you already saw. So, here we go:

Rui Patrício – 6: Couldn’t do anything about any of the goals and made plenty of good saves in between.

Ezequiel Schelotto – 3: Looked very shaky defensively and wasn’t much of a threat going forward.

Sebastián Coates – 5: He seemed very out of sorts after ordinarily being assured at the bank since he arrived.

Rúben Semedo – 6: Probably the best player on the pitch for Sporting. Made some crucial interceptions and his pace and strength were evident throughout.

Bruno César – 0: After playing so well and scoring against Real Madrid, this is probably Bruno César’s worst performance in a Sporting shirt. Jorge Jesus’ experiment with him at left-back is head scratcher when Jefferson is such a superior replacement.

William Carvalho – 5: Some good moments but generally a poor overall performance from William.

Adrien Silva – 6: As always, he gave 100%. He created more chances in centre midfielder than most of our strikers.

Gelson Martins – 4: Back to earth for Gelson Martins after his stella performance in Madrid. Perhaps the reports in the press comparing him to Cristiano Ronaldo and Luís Figo went to his head. He did however set up the goal and took a whack to the head by the goal post in the process.

Joel Campbell – 2: Looked lost on the pitch and couldn’t get involved. On the left he offered little support for Bruno César.

Alan Ruiz – 3: Couldn’t influence the game at all, had a few bright spots but was most anonymous.

André – 2: If Alan Ruiz was mostly anonymous then André was definitely anonymous. Didn’t do anything the entire game.

Substitutes:

Bryan Ruiz – 5: Certainly a big improvement when he came on and he was a far more creative than any of the other attackers in the first half. His cross helped set up Sporting’s goal.

Bas Dost – 6: 2 goals in 2 games is a great start for Bas Dost. He had a few other decent chances and looked the part up front.

Lazar Marković – 4: Couldn’t put his stamp on the game and was booked at the end for diving to try and win a penalty. That only works at Benfica, Lazar.

Jorge Jesus – 3: After the usual egotistical comments in the press, it was a dramatic slice of humble pie for Jesus. Clearly made a mistake in his initial team selection and the Bruno César at left-back experiment is still worrying.

João Pinheiro – 5: It was generally an easy game to referee but João Pinheiro still got a lot of calls in the middle of the park wrong. However, the bigger calls, (e.g. Marković’s dive) were correct.

Sporting Squad to Face Real Madrid

Sporting’s squad that travels to Spain to face Cristiano Ronaldo and friends tomorrow has been announced.

The Champions League allows for bigger squads than the Primeira Liga so it’s no surprise to see players like Vladimir Stojković make the cut.

Here’s the full squad:

Goalkeepers: Rui Patrício, Beto, Vladimir Stojković
Defenders: João Pereira, Ezequiel Schelotto, Ricardo Esgaio, Rúben Semedo, Sebastián Coates, Paulo Oliveira, Douglas Teixeira, Marvin Zeegelaar, Jefferson
Midfielders: William Carvalho, Adrien Silva, Bruno César, Elias, Radosav Petrović, Marcelo Meli, Bruno Paulista
Forwards: Lazar Marković, Bryan Ruiz, Gelson Martins, Matheus Pereira, Alan Ruiz, André, Bas Dost, Joel Campbell, Luc Castaignos

Champions League Squad Announced

The squad for Sporting’s Champions League campaign has been announced. UEFA has yet to publish the “B” list, meaning some youth team players like Matheus Pereira and Gelson Martins don’t feature but that should follow shortly.

All of the new signings feature, the only missing name from the first team squad proper is goalkeeper Ažbe Jug.

Goalkeepers: Rui Patrício, Beto, Vladimir Stojković*, Luís Maximiano*, Pedro Silva*
Defenders: Ezequiel Schelotto, Jefferson, Sebastián Coates, Paulo Oliveira, Douglas Teixeira, João Pereira, Rúben Semedo, Ricardo Esgaio, Marvin Zeegelaar, Pedro Empis*, Mauro Riquicho*, Ivanildo Fernandes*, Guilherme Ramos*, Abdu Conté*, Gonçalo Vieira*, Jefferson Encada*
Midfielders: Radosav Petrović, Bruno César, William Carvalho, Elias, Adrien Silva, Marcelo Meli, Bruno Paulista, Alan Ruiz, Bubacar Djaló*, Gelson Martins*, Bruno Paz*, Pedro Ferreira*, Fábio Martins*
Forwards: Lazar Marković, Joel Campbell, Bryan Ruiz, André, Luc Castaignos, Bas Dost, Luís Eloi*, Matheus Pereira*

*B list

Edited 13/9 to include to include the B squad.

Paços de Ferreira 0-1 SPORTING

Sporting picked up all 3 points in a hard fought contest against Paços de Ferreira with Adrien Silva getting the winner just before half-time.

Jorge Jesus was without João Mário, with the midfielder presumably even closer to Internazionale, so Gelson Martins started in his position. Islam Slimani also returned to the starting line-up and Bruno César began at left-back.

It was an even game with Sporting the having the better of the first half but finding it difficult to break down Paços de Ferreira.

The goal came just before half-time when Islam Slimani did excellently well to recover what looked like a lost cause with a perfect tackle. The Algerian passed out wide to Bruno César, whose cross found Gelson Martins. The winger headed down centrally to Adrien Silva who showed excellent technique to finish past Rafael Defendi.

Carlos Pinto’s men improved after the break but Sporting had chances to win the game as well.

Perhaps the best chance of the second half for Sporting was when Gelson Martins put in a fantastic cross from the left-hand side and Islam Slimani was just centimetres away converting.

In the end, Sporting will be happy with a hard fought 3 points on a difficult pitch. Sporting can now focus on next Sunday’s match against FC Porto.

SPORTING XI: Rui Patrício; João Pereira, Rubén Semedo, Sebastián Coates, Bruno César; William Carvalho (YC), Adrien Silva (Scored, 45′), Gelson Martins (Carlos Mané, 80′); Bryan Ruiz (Bruno Paulista, 90′), Alan Ruiz (Marvin Zeegalaar, 66′), Islam Slimani
Substitutes Not Used: Beto, Ezequiel Schelotto, Paulo Oliveira, Matheus Pereira

SPORTING 2-1 Wolfsburg

Sporting looked back to themselves after an uneasy pre-season with a 2-1 victory over Wolfsburg in the annual Troféu Cinco Violinos. The game saw the return of William Carvalho, João Mário and Adrien Silva to the starting line-up and the difference was obvious.

Indeed, Jorge Jesus’ starting XI for this match was his regular line-up for the second half of last season, so it was very much a full strength Sporting.

Before the match new signing Marcelo Meli was paraded in front of the fans. The Argentinian midfielder joins on loan from Boca Juniors.

Sporting opened the scoring through Islam Slimani, who’s smart finish beat goalkeeper Koen Casteels after Wolfsburg failed to deal with a cross.

Christian Träsch fouled Bruno César in the area to give Sporting a penalty. Adrien Silva stepped up and duly delivered with his effort.

Ricardo Rodríguez also pulled one back before half-time with a thunderous volley but Rui Patrício made an outstanding save to deny him.

At half-time Sporting paraded the new women’s football team.

The second half was a slower game with both sides making plenty of substitutions. Wolfsburg pulled a goal back through Anton-Leander Donkor in the 78th minute.

Wolfsburg couldn’t provide an equaliser though and Sporting once again won the Troféu Cinco Violinos. Most importantly though for Sporting and Jorge Jesus, the team was back to looking its old self.

Sporting now have two remaining pre-season games before the opening game of the season. They will face Real Betis and Nice on the 4th and 5th of August.

SPORTING XI: Rui Patrício; Ezequiel Schelotto (João Pereira 64′, YC), Rúben Semedo (Ewerton, 76′), Sebastián Coates (Naldo, 76′), Marvin Zeegelaar (YC) (Jefferson, 64′); William Carvalho (Alberto Aquilani, 76′), Adrien Silva (Scored, 34′) (João Palhinha, 55′), João Mário (Iuri Medeiros, 46′); Bruno César (Daniel Podence, 76′, YC), Bryan Ruiz (Matheus Pereira, 76′), Islam Slimani (Scored, 26′) (Alan Ruiz, 55′)
Substitutes Not Used: Ažbe Jug, Hernán Barcos

Europa League Squad Announced

Sporting have announced their Europa League squad for the upcoming group stages. No real surprises in the squads, Sporting certainly benefitting from being able to register Tobias Figueiredo, Carlos Mané and Gelson Martins as “B” players.

Goalkeepers: Rui Patrício, Marcelo Boeck, Ažbe Jug, Guilherme Oliveira*, Pedro Silva*, Vladimir Stojković*
Defenders: Jonathan Silva, Jefferson, Ewerton, Paulo Oliveira, Naldo, Ricardo Esgaio, Tobias Figueiredo*, Domingos Duarte*, Mauro Riquicho*
Midfielders: Alberto Aquilani, William Carvalho, João Mário, Adrien Silva, André Martins, Bruno Paulista, Francisco Geraldes*, Fábio Martins*, Rafael Barbosa*
Forwards: Junya Tanaka, Islam Slimani, Fredy Montero, André Carrillo, Teófilo Gutiérrez, Carlos Mané*, Cristian Ponde*, Daniel Podence*, Gelson Martins*, Matheus Pereira*

*”B list”

Rio Ave 1-2 SPORTING

Sporting earned  a hard-fought win against a resilient Rio Ave with goals coming from an Adrien Silva penalty and an Islam Slimani header.

Jorge Jesus picked Ricardo Esgaio ahead of João Pereira as well as giving a start to Alberto Aquilani over João Mário.

Sporting got the lead early on when Adrien Silva cooly placed a penalty after a Rio Ave handball. The midfielder will be happy to get the finish after his recent penalty miss.

Sporting’s second goal also came from some poor play from Rio Ave. This time they were unable to clear their lines which allowed Sporting to win the ball high up the pitch. A cross deflected off André Vilas Boas allowing Islam Slimani to head into an empty net.

The home side improved drastically after the break as Sporting seemed to lose some of their dynamic play. Indeed, the likes of André Carrillo, who has been so good so far this season, looked tired after the international break.

It wasn’t much of surprise when Rio Ave did pull one goal back, the Porto loanee Kayembe’s cross found Yazalde to head home after 69 minutes.

Fortunately despite Rio Ave pulling a goal back they looked unable to find another and Sporting grabbed an important win ahead of Thursday’s Europa League tie.

SPORTING XI: Rui Patrício; Ricardo Esgaio, Paulo Oliveira, Naldo (YC), Jefferson; Adrien Silva (Scored, 10′), Alberto Aquilani; André Carrillo (YC) (João Pereira, 90′), Bryan Ruiz (João Mário, 60′); Teófilo Gutiérrez (YC) (Carlos Mané, 77′), Islam Slimani (Scored, 39′)
Substitutes Not Used: Marcelo Boeck, Tobias Figueiredo, Gelson Martins, Fredy Montero

Académica 1-3 SPORTING

Sporting won 3-1 in Coimbra despite more misgivings about refereeing performances. Sporting had 2 penalties but still had plenty to complain about with referee Bruno Esteves resulting in Jorge Jesus being sent to the stands.

After the dismal scenes in Moscow during the week Jorge Jesus brought Jefferson back into left back and Carlos Mané started ahead of Bryan Ruiz. Ricardo Esgaio started ahead of the suspended João Pereira.

Mané paid the faith back almost immediately calmly slotting past Brazilian goalkeeper Lee after just 6 minutes gone on the clock.

Sporting were completely dominant in the match and got their second goal 18 minutes later when André Carrillo found Islam Slimani in plenty of space. The Algerian beautifully chipped Lee with his left foot to double Sporting’s lead.

The controversy began later when Bruno Esteves judged Adrien Silva’s tackle of Leandro Silva to be a penalty, though if it was one it was incredibly soft. Rabiola coverted the penalty emphatically, smashing it into the top left-hand corner with Rui Patrício unable to do anything about it.

A far more controversial moment for Esteves came later when Islam Slimani wasn’t awarded a penalty after he was brought down by João Real just before the interval. It was an obvious penalty, despite João Real initially getting a touch to the ball his trailing leg took out the striker who would have been through on goal.

This caused plenty of fury from Sporting players and staff with Esteves sending Jorge Jesus to the stands and Bruno de Carvalho soon followed on his own accord.

Académica, after being dominated in the first half, improved in the second, though Sporting were still the better team. The home side defended better and were given more confidence from reducing the scoreline in the first half.

Still, Adrien Silva should have put the game to bed when Fernando Alexandre handballed in the penalty area. The midfielder, usually so good at penalties, hit the post for what could have been an important 3rd goal for Sporting.

Sporting had another penalty in the 82nd minute this time Fernando Alexandre pulling back Islam Slimani as he was about to burst through on goal. Bruno Esteves showed the midfielder his second yellow card. This time substitute Alberto Aquilani stepped up to take the penalty and cooly converted to give Sporting the win and moving them up to 2nd place behind Porto.

SPORTING XI: Rui Patrício; Ricardo Esgaio, Paulo Oliveira, Naldo, Jefferson (YC) (Jonathan Silva, 87′); Adrien Silva (YC), João Mário; André Carrillo (Alberto Aquilani, 70′), Carlos Mané (Scored, 6′); Teófilo Gutiérrez (Bryan Ruiz, 64′), Islam Slimani (Scored, 24′)
Substitutes Not Used: Marcelo Boeck, Tobias Figueiredo, Gelson Martins, Fredy Montero

Sporting Announce Champions League Squad

Sporting have announced their squad for the upcoming Champions League play-off games against CSKA Moscow. The inclusions of William Carvalho and Ewerton, who have been injured over pre-season, is a welcome return.

Goalkeepers: Rui Patrício, Marcelo Boeck, Ažbe Jug
Defenders: João Pereira, Ricardo Esgaio, Paulo Oliveira, Naldo, Ewerton, Jefferson, Jonathan Silva
Médios: William Carvalho, Adrien Silva, Alberto Aquilani, João Mário, André Martins
Avançados: André Carrillo, Bryan Ruiz, Junya Tanaka, Fredy Montero, Teófilo Gutiérrez, Islam Slimani

This, of course, doesn’t include the “B” list of players allowed to be included to Champions League squads. Any players can be registered who were born after 1st January 1994. This includes the likes of Wallyson Mallmann, Rúben Semedo, Gelson Martins and Carlos Mané.