Summer Transfers 2016 Review: Departures

So, how did Sporting do in the transfer market this summer? Here’s a look. First, we’ll start with the departures before the far more exciting stuff of arrivals.

André Carrillo to Benfica (Free) – Enough has been said of this transfer already.

Héldon Ramos to Rio Ave (Loan) – Another loan move for Cape Verdean and once again at Rio Ave. The forward doesn’t seem to feature in Jorge Jesus’ plans so it is only a matter of time before his permanent departure.

Mica Pinto to Belenenses (Free) – Mica Pinto was progressing well in the youth system and B teams but he suffered some major injuries which has hurt his development. Hopefully he can get back to his potential at Belenenses.

Luís Ribeiro to Estoril (Free) – Another player who had plenty of games for the B team but didn’t quite make the grade. Currently has José Moreira and Thierry Graça to beat in the pecking line up.

André Geraldes to Vitória de Setúbal (Loan) – Loan moves to Vitória de Setúbal seem to be a good thing for a lot of Sporting players lately, like João Mário and Rúben Semedo. Geraldes is 25-years old now so he really needs to impress if he wants to break into the Sporting first team.

Tobias Figueiredo to Nacional (Loan) – Tobias was on the fringes of the first team, with the arrival of Sebastián Coates making it difficult for him to get game time. A full season loan at Primeira Liga side should do that and so far he has scored against Benfica for the Madeira side, so that’s a good start.

Francisco Sousa to Gondomar (Free) – Featured for the U19s last season but not deemed good enough to be promoted to the B team so he leaves for Gondomar.

Jorge Silva to Leixões (Free) – Returns to his former club after failing to make the grade with the B team.

Seejou King to Aves (Free) – Had a really bad injury last season but Seejou King is another one who did well for the B team but couldn’t find their way into the senior side. Has yet to make his debut for the club.

Miguel Lopes to Akhisar (Loan) – Miguel Lopes is still a victim of his own high wage demands, another ghost of the Godinho Lopes regime. He joins a large Portuguese speaking contingent at Akhisar in Turkey.

Rafael Barbosa to União da Madeira (Loan) – Although the B team could use his services so far this season, Barbosa has been given a loan to União to improve his game. The 20-year old featured regularly last season and has so far played 6 times for União.

Zhang Lingfeng to Torreense (Free) – The Chinese midfielder didn’t make the grade for the club at youth level so has been given a new lease of life at Torreense.

Domingos Duarte to Belenenses (Loan) – Has played in all 3 of Belenenses’ opening games so far. The young central defender has been improving massively in the last year so can hopefully evolve to the next level in Belém.

Filipe Chaby to Sporting da Covilhã (Loan) – Chaby was an excellent prospect at youth levels but a few injuries have stalled his development. At 22-years old now it’s important that the midfielder impresses for Covilhã this season.

Cristian Ponde to Sporting da Covilhã (Loan) – Much like Chaby, this is Cristian Ponde’s season to try and shine. This is the forward’s first loan move away from the club and scored his first goal for Covilhã against Portimonense last weekend.

Oriol Rosell to Belenenses (Loan) – Rosell didn’t get as much game time at Vitória de Guimarães last season as was expected or needed. It seems Jorge Jesus isn’t a fan of the Spanish midfielder so this may be more a shop window loan for him.

Simeon Slavchev to Lechia Gdansk (Loan) – The Bulgarian midfielder arrived at Sporting a few years ago with a good reputation in his native Bulgaria. Slavchev has yet to convince though so he goes on another excursion, this time to Poland.

Hadi Sacko to Leeds United (Loan) – The French forward scored the winning goal on his Championship debut against Birmingham City. It is unlikely that he will return to Sporting after his loan season though.

Ousmane Dramé to Moreirense (Free) – The French forward was given a new lease of life in Portugal after his career in Italy floundered. He will be remembered for his one game and one amazing goal in the first team.

Zezinho to Levadiakos (Free) – The Guinea-Bissau international looked good for the first team when Jesualdo Ferreira first brought him in back in 2012, but the midfielder fell just short of the required ability for the first team.

Ryan Gauld to Vitória de Setúbal (Loan) – Another player who will hopefully make a large amount of progress at Setúbal. This is the Scottish midfielder’s first taste of Primeira Liga football so hopefully he can progress and fulfil his massive potential.

Francisco Geraldes to Moreirense (Loan) – A player who has already had a great start to life at Moreirense. When the rumours of Adrien Silva possibly moving to Leicester City, there were many calls for Geraldes to be called from loan to fulfil his role. Geraldes looks set to have an outstanding season and will hopefully return ready for the first team next season.

Aya Diouf to Sertanense (Loan) – The Senegalese defender only joined Sporting’s academy a few years ago and will move on loan to Sertanense before being given a B team shot.

Guilherme Oliveira to Cova da Piedade (Loan) – The young goalkeeper has plenty of competition at the club with Pedro Silva, Vladimir Stojković and Luís Maximiano currently the favoured choices. The 21-year old desperately needs regular gam time.

Teófilo Gutiérrez to Rosario Central (Loan, €1,200,000 fee) – Just when Teó was getting good he decided he wanted to return to Argentina. The move was a prolonged affair with the Colombian preferring River Plate as his destination. Although this is a loan move I wouldn’t expect to see Gutiérrez in a Sporting shirt again.

Kikas to Leixões (Free) – Kikas certainly can’t be faulted for his loyalty to the club and it’s only a shame he couldn’t break into the first team. Hopefully goes on to have a great career.

André Martins to Olympiakos (Free) – Despite his promise, André Martins couldn’t make his way into the team with the arrival of Jorge Jesus. Now he joins Paulo Bento in Greece and another player who hopefully finds his way back into prominence.

João Palhinha to Belenenses (Loan) – João Palhinha looked awfully close to getting into the first team this season but just fell short despite featuring a lot in pre-season. Hopefully improves ready to take his spot next season.

Alberto Aquilani to Pescara (Free) – After being stupidly sent off in a humiliating pre-season friendly, that probably sealed the departure of Aquilani. The Italian midfielder looked classy whenever he played but was not going to break into the first team last season and it seems even with the departure of João Mário was not a part of Jesus’ plans and departs.

Naldo to Krasnodar (€4,500,000) – Bought for €3m and sold for €4.5m, isn’t a bad piece of business from Bruno de Carvalho. Initially the Brazilian looked solid alongside Paulo Oliveira in defence but with the arrival of Sebastián Coates and the emergence of Rúben Semedo he found games hard to come by.

Hernán Barcos to Vélez Sarsfield (Loan) – Barcos didn’t impress at all in his stint, joining as part of the transfer of Fredy Montero out to China last season, he didn’t come close to the Colombian’s talent. Although his departure is a loan he is unlikely to return to the club.

João Mário to Internazionale (€40,000,000) – What can we say about João Mário? On the pitch and off the pitch the creative midfielder was a class act. There’s been plenty written about this so I don’t need to expand too much but hopefully João Mário excel at Inter and returns to the club one day in the future. The transfer fee, of course, is a record sale by Sporting and credit must go to Bruno de Carvalho for the negotiations.

Jonathan Silva to Boca Juniors (Loan) – The left-back has had his loan move to Boca Juniors extended after impressing there. With Jefferson seemingly not favoured by Jorge Jesus and Bruno César and Marvin Zeegelaar as the alternatives there’s certainly a spot for the Argentinian in the squad next season.

Ewerton to Kaiserslautern (Loan) – The Brazilian central defender was similar to Naldo in the sense that initially he looked solid but with other players emerging he fell down the pecking order. A move to the Bundesliga could be a good option for him and the German club have the option to buy the player at the end of the loan move.

Iuri Medeiros to Boavista (Loan) – Medeiros again got very close to the first team but just fell short so he will go on another loan move. He impressed at Moreirense last season and at 22-years old now this should hopefully be his final loan move before breaking into the first team.

Carlos Mané to Stuttgart (Loan) – Held back by the emergence of Gelson Martins and, perhaps, the arrival of Jorge Jesus, Carlos Mané hasn’t quite made it yet. After being incredibly promising early on and popping up with goals it seems his future may lie elsewhere. Of course, after his 2 season loan spell at Stuttgart, Mané could return to the club better than ever.

Daniel Podence to Moreirense (Loan) – Much like Iuri Medeiros, Daniel Podence was very close to making it into the first team this season. The diminutive and tricky attacker looked impressive in pre-season but recent transfers meant his first team appearances would be rare. With Sporting’s currently stacked list of young, tricky, quick attacking wingers extending to Matheus Pereira, Gelson Martins, Iuri Medeiros, Carlos Mané and Podence himself a loan move is the best option for him.

Wallyson Mallmann to Standard Liège (Loan) – Again so close yet so far for Wallyson as far as being promoted to the first team goes. Another loan spell may well be his last if he doesn’t impress Jorge Jesus.

Rúben Ribeiro to Aves (Free) – Some websites seem to have this transfer down as a loan but O Jogo claimed the player had rescinded his contract to join Aves on a 2-year deal. Indeed, a loan would probably have been better had he wanted to try and move up the ranks but it seems he’ll be going a different route.

Salim CIssé to Olhanense (Free) – The Guinean forward initially looked very promising but he hasn’t developed as Sporting would have hoped so he could revive his career with Olhanense after rescinding his contract.

Islam Slimani to Leicester City (€30,000,000) – Obrigado, Islam Slimani. Super Slim won everyone over with his passion, his late goals and his performances in the big games. Again, not much else is needed to be said about him as he was a firm favourite with the fans. Initially joining for €300,000 and leaving for 100x more, this will also be seen as the club’s best bit of transfer business to date. Hopefully goes on to have an excellent career and return in the future.

Zakaria Labyad (Released) – What could have been with Zakaria Labyad. The Moroccan has the talent and the potential but he can’t seem to find it when it matters, he won’t be missed and was a relic of the Godinho era.

Total loanees – 24 (almost putting Chelsea to shame)
Income – €75,700,000

Part 2 to follow later…

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January 2014 Transfer Window Round-Up

It was a busy transfer window for Sporting that went right to the last few seconds, here’s recap of the comings and goings of the January window:

Transfers In:

The transfer of Shikabala was completed just seconds before the closing of the transfer window. The terms with the player had been agreed early on in the day and the player had passed a medical before the transfer looked off due to complications with the player’s former club, Zamalek. Sporting were able to just make the transfer of the mercurial Egyptian playmaker in time with Sporting to pay approximately €500,000 to the club.

Shikabala has a contract until 2018 with a transfer release clause of €45,000,000 and will early the number 7 shirt.

Earlier on in the day Sporting also completed the transfer of Héldon Ramos from Marítimo for a fee of €1,400,000. An earlier bid by Sporting for both Héldon and Rúben Ferreira was turned down by Marítimo but the club were able to secure the transfer on deadline day.

Héldon has a contract until 2019 with a the familiar release clause of €45,000,000 and will be wearing the number 20 shirt.

Sticking with Marítimo, Sporting also agreed terms with Leocísio Sami to join the club for free at the beginning of the new season. Sami is out of contract with Marítimo this year but no word yet on the details of the contract.

That’s not all for what was a busy transfer deadline day, as Matías Pérez joined up with the B team. The Paraguayan central-defender from Club National will be on loan for 18 months at the club with Sporting have an option to buy in the future.

One big deal that was overshadowed perhaps was the completion of Fredy Montero’s transfer from Seattle Sounders. There was plenty of speculation that another club could snap up the Colombian forward but Sporting have made the deal permanent.

Elsewhere there was  the surprise signing of Ousmane Dramé on a free transfer from Padova to reinforce the B team. He will be another attacking option after the signing of Lewis Enoh from Sourense was completed just before the transfer window opened.

There was no departure for wantaway midfielder Elias with the club failing to agree terms with Flamengo and other interested clubs. For now the player is eligible to play for Sporting but that seems an unlikely outcome, the player will still be training with the B team, and it is likely that he can still move to Brazil where the season doesn’t begin until March.

Victor Golas also returns from his uneventful loan spell at Corona Braşov and will likely fight for his B team spot with Mickaël Meira and Luís Ribeiro.

Transfers Out:

The two big departures of the winter window were that of Jeffrén Suárez and Zakaria Labyad.

The former has rescinded his contract to join Real Valladolid. The club will save a massive €7.2m in future contracts to the player.

The latter, Labyad, was loaned out to Dutch club Vitesse where he will spend 18 months on loan with the club again saving money from the Moroccan’s wages.

A deal that was the most mutual was that of Fabián Rinaudo going on loan to Italian side Catania. The Argentine midfielder was finding it difficult to play any football due to the supreme season of William Carvalho. The midfielder was rewarded with a new contract as Sporting wish to keep hold of the midfielder if possible.

The only other permanent deal away from the club was that of Alexandre Guedes who joined Catalan club Reus Deportiu but there were plenty of other loan deals:

João Mário and Betinho to Vitória de Setúbal
Diogo Salomão to Deportivo de La Coruña
Salim Cissé to Arouca
Tobias Figueiredo to Reus Deportiu
Nuno Reis to Cercle Brugge

So it was in all a successful winter break for Sporting. The money saved from the wages of Zakaria Labyad and Jeffrén Suárez covering all of the signings into the club with some leftover.

Zakaria Labyad Loaned to Vitesse

Zakaria Labyad has finally found a new club after having been frozen out of the team since the start of the season.

The Moroccan will join Dutch side Vitesse Arnhem on loan until the end of next the season. Sporting look to save around €4,500,000 in wages with the departure of the player. Though kind of wages being a remnant of the reign of Godinho Lopes.

Labyad has said he is “relieved to return to the Netherlands”. Vitesse are currently second in the Eredivisie this season and are level on points with first place Ajax.

Transfer News 08/01/14

Another round of the various rumours surrounding Sporting in recent days…

According to France Football, USM Alger’s Abderrahmane Bourdim is set to go on trial at Sporting shortly. The youth international has been gathering interest from Monaco and Dijon.

João Mário may not be on his way to Cercle Brugge after all with the player now set to join Vitória de Setubal until the end of the season.

The Elias saga continues this time with Corinthians and Atlético Mineiro also names mentioned but the midfielder still wants to return to Flamengo.

There is currently interest in Zakaria Labyad from Fulham, FC Twente and his former club, PSV Eindhoven. A loan deal for the player until the end of the season is the most likely option at the moment.

Brazilian fullback Welder was looking likely to exit the Alvalade this month with the Palmeiras man not getting much football but the player’s agent, Beto Rappa, says the player is enjoying his time at the club and wants to stay to earn his place in the team.

Bruno de Carvalho is hoping for the club to repurchase the rights of two Sporting players: William Carvalho and Marcos Rojo. The President wants to do it before the start of the World Cup with the club hoping to cash in on large transfer fees afterwards. Sporting currently own 60% of the economic rights of William Carvalho but just 25% of Marcos Rojo.

In a more bizarre story A Bola are reporting that Sporting have been monitoring the situation of Jorge Fucile as he is surplus to requirements at FC Porto. The Uruguayan defender is free to move on from the club with the player almost certain to join Club Nacional de Football it is unlikely he’ll be at Sporting anytime soon as especially with Sporting being well covered in that area.

Transfer Round Up 2013: Departures

So, that’s the transfer window done and dusted and all around there’s quite a few positives for the club, Bruno de Carvalho and Sporting fans.

In a nice two-part post let’s look at the departures from the club before we get to the good stuff:

Gael Etock to Cercle Brugge (loan): There was initially some confusion as to whether or not this move was a loan or a permanent deal. Judging by the fact that the Belgian club’s website states his contract is until 2014 we’ll assume that this is a loan deal. Cercle Brugge is essentially our feeder club, after all. Etock was called up to a few of Jesualdo Ferreira’s first team squads last season but could only make the bench some more competitive team football may well be what he needs.

Renato Neto to Gent (loan): I had though perhaps that Renato Neto may get some B team action this year but he has been sent to Gent on loan again for another season. The Brazilian midfielder still has a contract with Sporting until 2015 so still has a chance to make an impact at the club when he returns.

Gelson Fernandes to Freiburg (€500,000): He must definitely won’t be missed. Failed to produce much in his stint with the club and was loaned out to FC Sion as soon as possible.

Farley Rosa to FK Sevastopol (?): Initially Farley Rosa looked rather good for the U19 team. Some may remember his fantastic goal against Liverpool at Anfield in the NextGen tournament. He couldn’t force his way into the B team last year and was moved on to Ukrainian club Sevastopol. No idea about any fees involved (I assume there was at least something) as this was not a widely reported on transfer.

Luís Cortez to Belenenses (?): A similar case here to the Farley Rosa transfer. Another youngster who showed some promise but perhaps just wasn’t good enough to make the grade at the Alvalade. At Belenenses he may have hoped to get some first team football was immediately loaned out to SC União Torreense.

Miguel Lázaro to Vitória FC (?): 18-year old goalkeeper who made the transfer to the other side of the river to join Setúbal.

Miguel Lopes to Lyon (loan): The French club have an option to purchase the right-back for €10,000,000 should they want to. The main reason for this loan is Miguel Lopes’ high wages (thanks again, Godinho). He had a fairly solid end to the season although nothing spectacular.

Stijn Schaars and Santiago Arias to PSV Eindhoven (€1,600,000): Stijn Schaars’ sale is another transfer that aimed to reduce the wage budget although last year he was not nearly as good as he was in his debut season. The price is perhaps a little low when you consider how promising Santiago Arias looked at times whilst still being very young. Hopefully the club has inserted a % of future sale clause in his contract.

Sunil Chhetri to JSW Bangalore (?): Sunil Chhetri barely got a look-in at Sporting B last year and the entire transfer seemed like a ploy by Godinho Lopes to try and get some interest from Indian investors or tap into the market there. Neither or those worked and we also got a player who was not very good. No word on the transfer fee (if any).

Valentín Viola to Racing Club (loan): Viola returns to the club he calls home to Racing Club (he has a tattoo of the club’s crest on his arm). The Argentinian forward never impressed to much at the Alvalade scoring just 2 goals in 28 games. I’d be surprised if he doesn’t not make his return to his old club permanent after the loan deal is done.

Jorge Chula to Marítimo (free): Signed as an addition to the B team, Jorge Chula never managed to impress too much. A solid player that should do just fine at Marítimo instead.

Leandro Grimi to Godoy Cruz (?): Leandro Grimi looked very promising once upon a time after first arriving at AC Milan. He never managed to build on that and he has moved permanently to the club where he was on loan last year. No word on any fee but I imagine not much if anything.

Nii Plange to Vitória Guimarães (free): Nii Plange was signed essentially to fill out the ranks of the B team last year. The Burkinabé / Ghanian isn’t a bad player and will probably do ok at Guimarães and indeed Sporting will receive 50% of any future transfer fee.

André Santos to Vitória Guimarães (free): We all had high hopes for André Santos but it seems his development stalled and now was perhaps the perfect time for him to leave the club. André Santos’ contract was terminated with the club so he was free to move on.

Atila Turan to Stade de Reims (free): Turan looked promising when he first signed for Sporting from Grenoble Foot 38 but couldn’t manage to force his way into the team and spent most of his time out on loan. Sporting will receive 40% of any future transfer.

Tiago Ilori to Liverpool (€7,500,000): A hugely talented prospect but Ilori’s demand for higher wages meant he was likely to leave the club. Liverpool had long been interested and finally managed to get their man for a fair fee. Included in the contract is a clause that will mean Liverpool cannot sell the player to either FC Porto or Benfica

Danijel Pranjic to Panathinaikos (free): I was hopeful when Sporting signed Danijel Pranjic that would be a great addition to the squad… how wrong I was. Pranjic failed to make any sort of an impact at the club and he was free to leave for Greece.

Diego Rubio to Pandurii (loan): The club that is now best known for knocking out Jesualdo Ferreira’s Braga out of the Europe League have taken Diego Rubio on loan with an option to buy for €10,000,000. Rubio arrived in Portugal from Chile with huge promise but needs some more competitive football to try and fulfil it.

Zezinho to Veria FC (loan): Zezinho looked like he was just about to break into the Sporting team at the end of last season and had a few rather good showing in midfield (especially against FC Porto). The club have decided to give him a loan to Greece where he should be facing a higher level of competition more regularly then he would with the B team. May well help improve his development.

Bruma to Galatasaray (€10,000,000): Finally. The saga ended. Bruma played just 13 games for Sporting but from what you would have read in the papers you’d be forgiven for thinking he had been at the club for a decade. Bruma took some bad advice and failed to worm his way out of his contract to move away from the club. After the entire debacle with the courts there was no way back for Bruma at Sporting. Indeed, Bruno de Carvalho will happy to have received such a substantial offer for a player who would have been able to sign for any other club for free in January. On top of the initial transfer fee there are also €3,000,000 worth of future add-ons as well as a similar clause in the contract to that of Tiago Ilori that ensure Galatasaray cannot sell the player to Porto or Benfica.

Khalid Boulahrouz released: YAY!

EDIT: Victor Golas to Corona Brasov (loan): A very late move sees Sporting B goalkeeper to Romanian side Corona Brasov on loan. The move will see Luís Ribeiro and Mickaël Meira compete for the B team spot.

Total profit from player sales (estimated): €20,100,000

Perhaps some of the most important pieces of business over the summer now is those who didn’t go.

Rui Patrício: How on earth we kept Rui Patrício, I don’t know. It helped that Bruno de Carvalho had made sure any bids would have to be substantial and, considering Patrício’s talent, fair. There were rumours of Monaco, Arsenal and a whole host of other big spending clubs but nothing came of it and São Patrício remains saving our asses for another year.

Diego Capel: Although very talented Diego Capel seemed likely to leave with his high wages and Sporting hoping to make some sort of money out of the Spanish winger but the transfer window shut before any deal was made. There seemed to be various clubs interested from Liverpool to Olympique de Marseile but, for now, Capel stays.

Jeffrén Suárez: The disappointing Jeffrén stays at the Alvalade for another season. A mix of injury, high wages and some poor performances made it likely that the winger would leave but despite interest from a host of La Liga club no deal was made. A stint in the B team maybe likely as he becomes back up to André Carrillo, Wilson Eduardo, Diego Capel and even Diogo Salomão.

Zakaria Labyad: Still only 20 but Zakaria Labyad did not seem to be anyway near the level we may have expected from him last season. Frequently wasteful or anonymous Labyad couldn’t find a first team place although his technical talent is without question. Labyad’s high wages meant to club were keen to get rid of him and sent him to the B team. The player had flirted with the likes of PSV Eindhoven, Ajax, and a few other Dutch clubs but nothing came of it.

Evaldo: How is he still here? The club did try to cancel Evaldo’s contract but the player did not want to and so will stay for at least another season and pick up some more money. Evaldo will now become back up to Jefferson, Welder and perhaps Mica.

In tomorrow’s post we look at all of our new signings as well as all the many players who were handed new long-term deals at the club.

Sporting’s Europa League Group Stage Squad Announced

Sporting’s squad for the group stage for the UEFA Europa League has been announced on the UEFA website. The full squad with B team members is as follows:

Goalkeepers: Rui Patrício, Marcelo Boeck, Victor Golas, Luís Ribeiro
Defenders: Daniel Carriço, Xandão, Khalid Boulahrouz, Marcos Rojo, Cédric Soares*, Tiago Ilori*, Emiliano Insúa, Tobias Figueiredo*, Michael Pinto*
Midfielders: Stijn Schaars, Marat Izmailov, Zakaria Labyad, Fabián Rinaudo, Adrien Silva, Bruno Pereirinha, André Martins, Danijel Pranjić, Kikas*, Edelino Ié*, Filipe Chaby*, João Mário*, Luís Cortez*, Elias, Gelson Fernandes, Zezinho
Forwards: Jeffrén Suárez, Ricky van Wolfswinkel, Diego Capel, Valentín Viola, André Carrillo, Carlos Mané*, Iuri Medeiros*, Ricardo Esgaio*, Bruma*, Betinho*

(* – Players with an asterisk are on the ‘B list’)

Sporting News Round-Up

It’s been a while since our last update so there’s plenty of news to catch-up on before Sporting take on Rio Ave in the first home league game of the season tomorrow.

Firstly, last Sunday the Primeira Liga returned to action last weekend and Sporting took on Vitória de Guimarães at the Estádio D. Afonso Henriques and the game ended a dull 0-0 after a promising opening. Fortunately Braga, Benfica and Porto also drew all of their opening league games so a false start is not too bad.

The game also saw official debuts for Khalid Boulahrouz, Marcos Rojo, Gelson Fernandes and Zakaria Labyad with the latter appearing as a substitute. Here was Ricardo Sá Pinto’s team for the game:

Sporting XI: Rui Patrício; Cédric Soares (YC), Khalid Boulahrouz, Marcos Rojo (YC), Emiliano Insúa; Gelson Fernandes (Zakaria Labyad 72′), Adrien Silva (André Martins 46′, YC), Elias; André Carrillo (YC), Diego Capel (Jeffrén Suárez 89′), Ricky van Wolfswinkel (YC)
Subs Not Used: Marcelo Boeck, Daniel Carriço, Stijn Schaars, Fabián Rinaudo

After that Sporting opened up their Europa League campaign with a trip to Denmark to face AC Horsens. Again Sporting drew but managed to get a goal too courtesy of André Carrillo after Martin Spelmann opened the scoring for the home side.. Indeed, Ricky van Wolfswinkel will feel aggrieved that he failed to score when the Dutchman wasted a couple of chances throughout the game. The performance at the very least, was an improvement over the game against Guimarães.

Sporting XI: Rui Patrício; Cédric Soares, Khalid Boulahrouz, Marcos Rojo, Emiliano Insúa; Stijn Schaars (Zakaria Labyad 58′), Adrien Silva, Elias (André Martins 78′); André Carrillo (Scored 79′), Jeffrén Suárez (Diego Capel 66′), Ricky van Wolfswinkel
Subs Not Used: Marcelo Boeck, Daniel Carriço, Xandão, Gelson Fernandes

There was also news that Rui Patrício has signed a new contract with Sporting taking him with the club all the way until 2018. This will at least put any transfer rumours to bed for a few days.

Patrício said that he was “very happy with this outcome” and “renewing with Sporting was something I really wanted”. Rui also said how he wanted to help the younger players out whilst at Sporting to improve their development.

Meanwhile in the B team for Oceano –

Sporting B picked up their first competitive win since they returned to action this season. Sporting won 2-1 against Sporting Clube da Covilhã after going behind to Gilberto’s early strike. It was Betinho and Diego Rubio (returning from suspension) who got the goals for Oceano. João Gonçalves stepped in for Santiago Arias who was injured in the last game against Guimarães B. Pedro Mendes also saw a red card after receiving a late second yellow card meaning he would miss the next game against Atlético Clube de Portugal.

Sporting B XI: Victor Golas; João Gonçalves (Iuri Medeiros 68′, YC), Pedro Mendes (YC, YC+RC), Tobias Figueiredo, Michael Pinto; João Mário (Filipe Chaby 87′), Zezinho (YC), Ricardo Esgaio (YC); Bruma, Nii Plange (Diego Rubio 72′), Betinho
Subs Not Used: Luís Ribero, Tiago Ilori, Atila Turan, Gaël Etock

Atlético Clube de Portugal proved a tricky tie for Oceano da Cruz’s men at the Estádio Tapadinha. The game was very even with Victor Golas being Sporting’s best player for most of the game.

Bruma was the man who made the difference with an excellent strike to put Sporting ahead after 72 minutes with Atlético goalkeeper Filipe Leão helpless to stop it.

Sporting went further ahead just 5 minutes later via another Ricardo Esgaio penalty after a handball in the area. Atlético pulled a goal back in the 82nd minute when Hugo Carreira headed in from close range to set up a very nervous finish for Sporting.

The game was made certain in the very final seconds when Gaël Etock ran through a tired Atlético defence and slotted under Leão to give Sporting B another win.

Sporting B XI: Victor Golas; João Gonçalves (Filipe Chaby 46′, YC), Tiago Ilori, Tobias Figueiredo, Michael Pinto (YC); Zezinho, Ricardo Esgaio (Scored 76′), Iuri Medeiros; Bruma (Scored 72′), Diego Rubio (Eric Dier 78′), Betinho (Gaël Etock 46′, Scored 90+5′)

Match Report: SPORTING 1-0 Olympiacos

Sporting won their final pre-season game 1-0 thanks to an excellent Elias strike in the second-half.

Ricardo Sá Pinto’s final pre-season first team may perhaps give clues as to who will start the opening league game away to Vitória de Guimarães next Sunday. Sá Pinto went for Rui Patrício behind a defence partnership of Marcos Rojo and Khalid Boulahrouz with Cédric at right-back and Insúa at left-back. Adrien, Gelson Fernandes and Elias made up the midfield and as familiar attacking front three of Diego Capel, André Carrillo and Ricky van Wolfswinkel.

The game was part of the new Troféu Cinco Violinos (Five Violins Trophy) named after Jesus Correia, Manuel Vasques, Fernando Peyroteo, José Travassos, and Albano the Cinco Violions from the late 1940 and early 1950s – Sporting’s most successful period.

The game went off to a slow start with Sporting holding plenty of possession but finding it difficult to break down Olympiacos’ solid defence. A defence typical of the coaching capabilities of the new coach, Leandro Jardim. Both sides went into the break goalless.

Sporting were unchanged after the first half and it didn’t take long before they were back in control of the ball again.

Sporting’s first real chance of the second half came in the 53rd minute when Adrien’s low cross in front of goal just evaded the outstretched boot of van Wolfswinkel.

The ball wasn’t cleared well by Olympiacos and immediately Sporting were on the attack again. Elias managed to find room just outside the box and his low strike crept passed Roy Carroll and into the right-hand corner to put Sporting ahead after 55 minutes gone on the clock.

Sporting had chances to increase their lead. Diego Capel in particular was guilty of not converting his shot after a good one-two with Elias.

After 70 minutes Ricardo Sá Pinto made the first changes of the game with Jeffrén Suárez, Fabián Rinaudo and André Martins replacing Diego Capel, Adrien Silva and the goal-scorer, Elias.

Olympiacos had an excellent chance in the 77th minute but Emiliano Insúa was on-hand to make a superb goal-line clearance for Sporting.

Zakaria Labyad made his Sporting debut on the 79th minute as substitute for André Carrillo. Labyad looked lively in his cameo forcing a good save out of Roy Carroll late on in the match.

Sporting managed to see-out the game and go into the new season with a win after what was a solid performance at the Alvalade.

Sporting XI: Rui Patrício; Cédric Soares, Khalid Boulahrouz, Marcos Rojo, Emiliano Insúa; Gelson Fernandes (Stijn Schaars 79′, Adrien Silva (Fabián Rinaudo 70′, YC), Elias (Scored 55′) (André Martins 70′); André Carrillo (Zakaria Labyad 79′), Diego Capel (Jeffrén Suárez 70′), Ricky van Wolfswinkel
Subs Not Used: Marcelo Boeck, Xandão, Bruno Pereirinha, Danijel Pranjić, Valentín Viola, Wilson Eduardo

Sporting News Round-Up

So, since it’s been a while since the last Leões/Lions post (yes, it’s been a really long while) here is a round-up of all the transfers and other pre-season news so far. As you know, there is always something happening at Sporting so there is a lot to write about.

Transfers in:

Zakaria Labyad was a deal done way back during the season but he has now officially become a Sporting player. Labyad will be in London over the summer representing Morocco at the Olympics. PSV Eindhoven, Labyad’s former club, are now seeking financial compensation for the deal.

Sporting’s next signing was Gelson Fernandes on the 4th July. Fernandes came from French side Saint-Étienne after having spent the second half of 2012 on loan to Udinese. Gelson’s deal is a 4-year contract with a buyout clause of €25m.

9 days later and Sporting completed another signing by signing former Bayern München player Danijel Pranjić. The Croatian has had his injuries in recent times but will reinforce Sporting in midfield was well as occasionally on the left-hand side in defence or attack.

The signings didn’t stop there as Khalid Boulahrouz joined the club for free just 4 days after that on the 18th July. The Netherlands and ex-Chelsea defender has been at VfB Stuttgart until his contract expired. Boulahrouz can play at both right-back and centre-back and has been handed a two-year contract.

Most recently Sporting completed the signing of Marcos Rojo the Argentinian left-back / centre-back from Spartak Moscow. The former Estudiantes player had been rumoured to join Benfica months ago but in the end chose Sporting instead.

Transfers out:

As already ported on the blog João Pereira has moved onto Valencia. Ânderson Polga left the club too and is still yet to find a new team. Long-time servant Tiago also retired.

Deportivo de La Coruña signed André Santos on loan as well as being able to keep Diogo Salomão for another season. More recently both Alberto Rodríguez and Evaldo Fabiano have also joined the newly promoted Spanish team.

Jaime Valdés officially became a Parma player after he was on loan there last season.

Edgar Ié and Agostinho Cá were all set to join Internazionale last month. Indeed, the deal had been reported as completed by various media outlets. Since then it emerged that the deal had in fact not gone through and now the pair have joined Barcelona instead and will play for the B team next season.

Other Sporting players have been released and found new clubs such as Diogo Rosado (Genoa), Mexer (Nacional), André Marques (FC Sion), Mateus Fonseca (FC Chiasso), and Rodolfo Simões (Marítimo).

As well as the following players leaving the club on loan: William Owusu (Westerlo), William Carvalho (Cercle Brugge), and Miguel Serôdio (Varzim).

Pre-Season Games:

Sporting opened Pre-Season with an 11-0 win over minnows Atlético Clube do Cacém. The Sintra club were unsurprisingly soundly beaten thanks to goals from Iuri Medeiros, Filipe Chaby, Emiliano Insúa, Adrien Silva, André Martins, Ricky van Wolfswinkel (x2), Diego Rubio (x2), and Wilson Eduardo (x2).

Last Thursday Sporting ended up losing 1-0 to Charlton Athletic in a game played at the Municipal de Lepe, the home of lower league side San Roque de Lepe. A last minute goal from Johnnie Jackson game the London club the win.

Sporting’s team for the game was:

Marcelo Boeck; Bruno Pereirinha (Cédric Soares 46′), Daniel Carriço (YC) (Nuno Reis 59′), Xandão (Oguchi Onyewu 59′), Emiliano Insúa (Danijel Pranjić 59′); Fabián Rinaudo (Gelson Fernandes 46′), Adrien Silva (Stijn Schaars 59′), Elias (André Martins 46′); Jeffrén Suárez (Wilson Eduardo 46′), Diego Capel (André Carrillo 56′), Ricky van Wolfswinkel (Diego Rubio 59′)

Sporting next face Sheffield Wednesday tomorrow night with kick off at 20:30.