Portugal Primera Liga - Match Prediction: Sporting Braga VS CD Tondela

Posted Sun, 21 Feb 2021 08:55:30 GMT        

Match Time:2/22/2021 02:00 Monday  (GMT+8)

Portugal Primera Liga --  Sporting Braga   VS   CD Tondela

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Braga welcome Tondela to the Braga Municipal Stadium on Monday, in an important game at both ends of the Primeira Liga table. Despite a 2-0 loss to Roma in the Europa League last time out, Braga will be looking to continue a good run of league form, having won four of their last five, while the visitors will be on the hunt for another win which would see them move further away from the relegation zone.

 

Match preview

Braga suffered a defeat last time out when they fell to a 2-0 loss at home to Roma in the first leg of their Europa League round-of-32 tie. Edin Dzeko put the Italian side ahead after just five minutes, and after Ricardo Esgaio was shown a red card in the second half for Braga, Borja Mayoral doubled Roma's lead late on, taking a two-goal advantage into the second leg. That loss broke a seven-game unbeaten run for Carlos Carvalhal's side, including four league wins.As a result of their good form, the Archbishops now sit third in the Primeira Liga, two points ahead of fourth-placed Benfica.Meanwhile, Carvalhal's men sit just one point behind second-placed Porto, and with the defending champions not playing until Monday, Braga will move up to second with a win here.Most recently in league action, Os Arcebispos defeated eighth-placed Santa Clara 1-0 away from home, with defender Cristian Borja netting the only goal of the game to seal their 13th league win of the Primeira Liga campaign, just five fewer than they managed in the entirety of last season.That extended their league unbeaten run to five matches, having won four and drawn the other with Porto, and Carvalhal will be looking to continue that good run with another win on Sunday.However, his side take on Tondela, who have begun to show positive signs recently, having won two of their last four league matches. Last time out, the visitors recorded a crucial 2-1 win at home to Maritimo. Jhon Murillo gave CDT Auriverdes the lead, but Diederrick Joel Tagueu equalised for the away side on the stroke of half time, before Mario Gonzalez renewed Tondela's one-goal lead early in the second half, securing their sixth league win of the season.That followed two consecutive losses for Pako Ayestaran's side, but they were only narrowly beaten by top-half opposition in Pacos de Ferreira and Rio Ave, showing that they are generally on the up, having beaten Farense 2-0 before those losses.CDT Auriverdes now sit in 11th spot in the Primeira Liga, five points clear of Gil Vicente in the relegation playoff place, and six points clear of the automatic drop zone.Thanks to two recent wins, Ayestaran's side have put some distance between themselves and the bottom three for the first time this season, and another result at the Braga Municipal Stadium could see that gap grow even wider.However, that will be no easy task, as they take on one of the league's form teams in Braga.

 

Braga Primeira Liga form: LWWWDW

Braga form (all competitions): WWDDWL

 

Tondela Primeira Liga form: WLWLLW

 

Team News

Despite being shown a red card on Thursday, Ricardo Esgaio will be eligible to play in this game, as his suspension will apply to the second leg of that tie.However, Carvalhal does still have several injury worries to deal with, including centre-back David Carmo, who is sidelined with an ankle injury.He is joined by experienced midfielder Andre Castro, as well as young winger Iuri Medeiros and left-back Francisco Moura, who all remain out with injuries.Andraz Sporar could have to battle to keep his place in the starting team for this game, having failed to score in the four matches since his loan arrival from Sporting Lisbon in January, in the deal which saw Paulinho move permanently to the capital.Twenty-year-old goalkeeper Joel Sousa remains out of contention for Tondela, having tested positive for COVID-19.He should be Ayestaran's only absentee though, with the Spanish manager expected to stick with a similar team to the side that beat Maritimo last time out.That could include Pedro Trigueira keeping his place in goal, after he was chosen over Babacar Niasse for the Maritimo game.Meanwhile, both scorers from last game should feature again here, with Jhon Murillo and Mario Gonzalez expected to lead the attack.

 

Braga possible starting lineup: Matheus; Tormena, Silva, Borja; Esgaio, Elmusrati, Gaitan, Galeno; Piazon, Sporar, Fransergio

Tondela possible starting lineup: Trigueira; Bebeto, Medioub, Suarez, Ferreira; Pedro, Grau, Augusto; Agra, Gonzalez, Murillo

 

Braga VS Tondela

Braga 2-1 Tondela

Portugal Primera Liga - Match Prediction: Sporting Braga VS CD Tondela