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Preview: Sintrense vs. Porto - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday's Taca de Portugal clash between Sintrense and Porto, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Porto will be looking to progress to the fourth round of the Taca de Portugal when they take on Sintrense at Estadio do Sport Uniao on Friday night.

The visitors have won this competition on 17 previous occasions and will be the overwhelming favourites to beat their third-tier opponents in order to advance to the next stage.

Match preview

Sintrense play their league football in the Campeonato de Portugal, which is the third division in Portugal, and it would be one of the biggest shocks in the competition if they managed to triumph on Friday night.

Tiago Zorro's side have had to win two matches to reach this stage of the competition, recording a 4-0 victory over Desportos de Gloria on September 11 before beating Macedo Cavaleiros on penalties following a 1-1 draw on September 25.

Sintrense have only actually played three league matches this season and have drawn all three, sharing the points with Operario, Pero Pinheiro and Rabo Peixe to sit eighth in their domestic table.

The Sintra-based outfit will view Friday's clash as the perfect opportunity to test themselves on a bigger stage, but it is extremely likely that their journey in this season's competition will end in the third round.

Porto manager Sergio Conceicao pictured on April 13, 2021© Reuters

Porto have a rich history in this competition, lifting the trophy on 17 occasions, which is the same as Sporting Lisbon, but both teams trail Benfica's 26 trophies in the Taca de Portugal.

The Dragons, who finished second in the Portuguese top flight last term, beat Benfica 2-1 in the 2019-20 final to win the competition, but Braga are actually the holders, having overcome Benfica in this year's final.

Porto will, of course, be keen to advance deep into this season's competition, but it is down their list of priorities this season, sitting third behind the league and Champions League.

Sergio Conceicao's side are currently second in their domestic table, having picked up 20 points from eight matches, and they recorded a 2-1 win over Pacos de Ferreira in their last match before the international break.

The Portuguese giants have work to do in the Champions League, though, as they suffered a 5-1 home defeat to Liverpool last time out, which has left them third in Group B after two rounds of matches.

Sintrense Taca de Portugal form:
  • W
  • W

Sintrense form (all competitions):
  • D
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • D

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

Team News

Porto's Otavio pictured in April 2021© Reuters

Sintrense's starting side is expected to have a similar look to the one that played out a 1-1 draw with Rabo Peixe in the league last time out.

David Teles came off the bench to score in the clash in Sintra, but Danilson Tavares should keep his starting role, while Luis Mota and Eduardo Marinho are expected to feature in attacking positions.

There should also be spots for Flavio Cristovao and Gabriel Castro, but Luis Canina is in contention, having impressed off the bench in his side's last contest.

Porto will be without the services of Otavio due to a hamstring problem, but the visitors are otherwise in good shape heading into the contest.

Head coach Conceicao will make wholesale changes from the side that started against Pacos de Ferreira before the international break, with very few of the XI likely to keep their spots.

Sergio Oliveira, Pepe, Fabio Vieira, Chancel Mbemba and Agustin Marchesin are all expected to come in, while there should be opportunities for some younger players, at least from the bench.

Sintrense possible starting lineup:
Garrido; Cristovao, Cascao, Teixeira, Fonseca; Alves, Castro, Tavares, Pedro; Mota, Marinho

Porto possible starting lineup:
Marchesin; Mario, Mbemba, Marcano, Manafa; Grujic, Uribe; Oliveira, Pepe, Vieira; Corona

SM words green background

We say: Sintrense 0-3 Porto

It is very difficult to make a case for the home side on Friday considering the difference in quality between the two teams. Porto will not be at full strength, but the Portuguese giants should still have far too much, and we are expecting them to progress to the next round of the competition in routine fashion.

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Porto's Otavio pictured in April 2021
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