News Round-Up: 14/07/14

Sporting kicked off their pre-season campaign with a win against an Azores XI on Saturday in Ponta Delgada and captured the Troféu Pedro Pauleta.

The game marked a first win for new coach Marco Silva and a whole host of first games for many of the new signings. Shikabala opened the scoring for Sporting in impressive style in the second-half before Santa Clara forward Hélder Arruda equalised just 2 minutes later. Sporting wrapped up the win with a Wilson Eduardo goal later on.

Marco Silva’s first XI was – Marcelo Boeck; Cédric Soares, Maurício, Eric Dier, Jefferson; Oriol Rosell, Adrien Silva, André Martins; Carlos Mané, André Carrillo, Fredy Montero.

After the break there was a huge amount of changes with Marco Silva swapping his entire outfield team. André Geraldes, Paulo Oliveira, Tobias Figueiredo, Mica Pinto, João Mário, Shikabala, Vítor Silva, Wilson Eduardo, Diego Capel and Junya Tanaka. Later on in the game also saw the introductions of Ryan Gauld and Héldon Ramos – only substitute goalkeeper Guilherme Oliveira didn’t feature.

Elsewhere, in case you’ve been living under a rock, the World Cup final finished with Marcos Rojo on the eventual losing side though the Argentinian had a great tournament.

In transfer rumours Eric Dier is being strongly linked with Newcastle United. O Jogo claiming the proposed transfer is “imminent”. Dier’s contract runs out in 2016 and it seems the defender is looking to move away from Sporting.

Islam Slimani’s racking up plenty of rumours with Leicester City the latest club to be linked with the Algerian striker.

Sporting have been linked with the signing of FC Twente winger Jerson Cabral. Cabral, of Cape Verdean descent, currently features for the Netherlands U21 side.

Finally, Record says that Valentín Viola and Salim Cissé have both been dropped down to the B team. Salim Cissé is perhaps likely to get on loan and whilst Viola homes to affirm his place in the Sporting team it looks like he may well be leaving the club soon.

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Rui Patrício and William Carvalho Going to the World Cup

Paulo Bento has announced his final 23-man Portugal squad for the World Cup with Rui Patrício and William Carvalho representing Sporting.

João Mário was in the long list for the squad but did not make the cut but William Carvalho after just 2 caps for the national team has proved just how important he is. Rui Patrício of course will be likely to start in goal for Portugal but will face competition from Eduardo and Europe League hero Beto.

Portugal’s first game will come against favourites Germany on the 16th June at the Fonte Nova in Salvador, Bahia.

Sporting Players in Portugal’s 30-Man World Cup Squad

The 30-man preliminary squad for Portugal’s World Cup campaign has been released with some surprises.

Paulo Bento has called up Rui Patrício, William Carvalho and João Mário into the team but hasn’t called up Cédric Soares or Adrien Silva.

Rui Patrício and William Carvalho were certainties but the inclusion of João Mário in the squad is a big surprise although the midfielder, who spent 2014 on loan at Vitória de Setúbal, is unlikely to progress into the final squad.

Elsewhere there are spots for former Sporting youth products Cristiano Ronaldo, Nani, João Moutinho, Beto, Ricardo Quaresma, Miguel Veloso, André Almeida and Silvestre Varela, as well as former Sporting players João Pereira and Hélder Postiga.