MX23RW : Saturday, April 17 05:36:54| >> :120:53999:53999:
Feb 27, 2021 at 6pm UK at Estadio de Sao Miguel
Santa ClaraSanta Clara
Pacos de FerreiraPacos de Ferreira
Allano (10'), Crysan (45'), Carlos (56')
Allano (49')
FT(HT: 2-0)

Preview: Santa Clara vs. Pacos de Ferreira - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Primeira Liga clash between Santa Clara and Pacos de Ferreira, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Santa Clara will be looking to get back to winning ways on Saturday after two consecutive league losses, when they host Pacos de Ferreira.

The visitors got an important win over Vitoria de Guimaraes last time out, cementing their position in fifth spot in the Primeira Liga table.

Match preview

Daniel Ramos, now in charge of Santa Clara, pictured as Boavista boss in June 2020© Reuters

Santa Clara come into this encounter having lost their last two matches in the league, firstly falling to a 1-0 away defeat at the hands of third-placed Braga, when Cristian Borja netted the only goal of the game.

Last time out, Daniel Ramos's side suffered a disappointing 1-0 away defeat to strugglers Gil Vicente, who sat just one point above the relegation zone.

The game looked set to end goalless until the hosts were awarded a penalty in added time, which Pedrinho converted to snatch all three points for his side.

As a result of those two consecutive losses, Ramos's men have dropped to eighth in the Primeira Liga table, although they do sit level with seventh-placed Moreirense.

That will be encouraging to the Portuguese manager, as a win in this game could see Os Acoreanos move back up the table, and gain ground on Saturday's opponents, who currently sit fifth.

Pacos de Ferreira have had an inconsistent run of results recently, after they previously won six consecutive Primeira Liga matches.

That run was broken by a goalless draw with Portimonense, in a game in which Pepa may have even felt lucky to come out with a point after their opponents looked the more likely side to win the match.

Os Castores then followed that result up with a 2-0 loss away at league leaders Sporting Lisbon, with Joao Mario and Joao Palhinha condemning Pepa's men to their first top-flight defeat of the new year.

However, they got back to winning ways last time out, securing an important 2-1 victory over sixth-placed Vitoria de Guimaraes, who sat just three points behind them before the game.

Goals from Joao Pedro and Helder Ferreira secured all three points for Pepa's side, after Oscar Estupinan gave the team from Guimaraes an early lead.

As a result, they now sit just one point behind Benfica in fourth spot, and only five points behind Braga who sit third.

That is largely down to their tight defence, as only two sides in the top flight have conceded fewer goals than the 17 they have shipped this campaign after 20 matches.

They will be looking to secure their 12th league win of the season on Saturday, as they set their sights back on the league's top four sides.

Santa Clara Primeira Liga form: WWDWLL
Santa Clara form (all competitions): LWDWLL

Pacos de Ferreira Primeira Liga form: WWWDLW

Team News

Pacos de Ferreira head coach Pepa pictured in June 2020© Reuters

Santa Clara are faced with several ongoing injury issues, including attacking midfielder Costinha, who is out with a muscle injury.

He is joined on the sidelines by midfielder Julio Romao and defender Cristian Gonzalez, with both players yet to feature for Os Acoreanos since the turn of the year.

However, centre-back Mikel Villanueva will be available for this match, after he served a suspension last time out for accumulating five yellow cards this campaign.

Attacker Carlos also served a one-match suspension in the last match, meaning he returns to the side to boost Santa Clara's attacking ranks.

The visitors will be without important midfielder Mohamed Diaby, who is out with an Achilles injury.

Douglas Tanque will return to the squad, after the striker missed the last game through suspension.

However, Joao Pedro scored last time out in the Brazilian's absence, meaning the two could be battling for the striker spot.

Santa Clara possible starting lineup:
Marco; Ramos, Cardoso, Villanueva, Mansur; Carvalho, Morita; Carlos, Lincoln, Ukra; Crysan

Pacos de Ferreira possible starting lineup:
Jordi; Fonseca, Baixinho, Gonzaga, Rebocho; Carlos, Eustaquio, Costa; Ferreira, Tanque, Singh

SM words green background

We say: Santa Clara 0-2 Pacos de Ferreira

We see Os Castores making it two wins on the bounce when they travel to the Estadio de Sao Miguel on Saturday, as they look to regain the form which caused their rise up the table.

Their strong defence, combined with a Santa Clara attack which has not been prolific this season, should result in another victory for Pepa's men.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or 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.Home/Away:data

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Porto's Costinha (L) celebrates as teammate Maniche joins hime after scoring against Manchester United in the final minute of a Champions League tie on March 9, 2004
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1Sporting Lisbon27216049133669
5Pacos de FerreiraPacos de Ferreira2713593332144
6Vitoria de GuimaraesGuimaraes26105113035-535
7Santa ClaraSanta Clara26105113329435
10Gil Vicente2684142533-828
12Rio AveRio Ave26610102231-928
17SC FarenseFarense2757152436-1222

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