MX23RW : Wednesday, September 22 13:43:30| >> :120:24627:24627:
Aug 7, 2021 at 8.30pm UK at Estadio dos Barreiros

Junior (19'), Costa (59'), Saenz (82')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Silva (61'), Horta (69')
Josue de Souza Silva (36'), Martins (58'), Fransergio (81')

Preview: Maritimo vs. Braga - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Primeira Liga clash between Maritimo and Braga, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Maritimo raise the curtain on their 2021/22 Primeira Liga campaign when they welcome Braga to the Estadio dos Barreiros on Saturday.

The home side escaped relegation last term by the skin of their teeth and go in search of a positive start to avoid a similar fate this time around.

Match preview

Braga head coach Carlos Carvalhal pictured in December 2020© Reuters

After an unbeaten pre-season set of fixtures, Braga suffered defeat in their first competitive outing of the new season, which was a 2-1 loss to Sporting Lisbon in the Supertaca Final on Saturday.

Carlos Carvalhal's men took the lead through Fransergio, before strikes from Jovane Cabral and Pedro Goncalves completed an impressive comeback for the Primera Liga champions.

Os Arcebispos finished in fourth place for the fifth time in seven years last season and will once again try to break the dominance of "The Big Three" (Sporting, Porto and Benfica), who have won all but two of the 87 Portuguese top-flight titles among themselves.

Braga have an impressive record against Saturday's opponents, with 10 victories and three draws from 18 matches dating back to 2015.

However, Saturday's visitors lost the most recent encounter 1-0 in April and have only won one of the last five away games versus the hosts.

Maritimo crashed out in the first qualifying round of the Taca da Liga following a 1-0 loss to Boavista two Sundays ago.

Luis Santos scored the all-important goal four minutes shy of half time as Julio Velazquez suffered defeat in his 300th game as a manager.

Os Verde-Rubros have been one of the mainstays of Portuguese football, having featured at the top level for the past four decades, but they were close to dropping down as they finished just one point clear of danger in the 2020/21 season.

A lack of firepower was a major Achilles heel for Saturday's hosts, who scored the third-fewest number of goals in the entire division.

Maritimo pre-season form:
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L

Maritimo form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • L

Braga pre-season form:
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • D
  • W

Braga form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • L

Team News

Braga's Francisco Moura celebrates scoring their second goal with teammates in November 2020© Reuters

Iuri Medeiros and Francisco Moura are unavailable for the visiting team as the duo continue to battle with knee injuries.

Ricardo Horta is on song at the moment, having netted five times in pre-season, including a first-half treble against FC Vizela on July 6.

Joel Tagueu and Rodrigo Pinho were responsible for two-thirds of Maritimo's 27 league goals last term, but the latter has completed a move to Benfica, leaving the former with the sole responsibility of providing firepower.

Even at the age of 33, Zainadine Junior remains an integral part of the hosts' defence, which recorded 10 clean sheets last time out.

Maritimo possible starting lineup:
Silva; Winck, Junior, Costa, China; Macedo, Pelagio, Mendes, Costa; Vidigal, Tagueu

Braga possible starting lineup:
Matheus; Sequeira, Silva, Oliveira; Fabiano, Al Musrati, A.Horta, Galeno; Fransergio, R.Horta, Ruiz

SM words green background

We say: Maritimo 1-2 Braga

Braga have enjoyed huge success in this fixture and are huge favourites to secure all three points going into Saturday's contest. While we expect Maritimo to give them a run for their money, we are tipping the away side to emerge victorious come the full-time whistle.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Away Win:data

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Sporting Lisbon's Pedro Goncalves celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates in January 2021
Read Next:
Wednesday's Primeira Liga predictions including Sporting Lisbon vs. Maritimo
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