The Port closes this Monday, December 18, the fifteenth round of the Portuguese Championship season 2017/2018 at the Estádio do Dragão. It will defend the leadership of the tournament before the Marítimo. The game has kick-off scheduled for 19h (Brasília time).
Divided into four fronts and achieving good performance in all of them, Porto gives signs that it can break the hegemony of Benfica’s achievements, although the Portuguese Championship title fight remains very fierce.
On Thursday, December 14, he showed his strength in the Portuguese Cup. At home, he thrashed Vitória de Guimarães 4-0 and advanced to the quarterfinals. Undefeated for 12 matches (eight wins and two draws), he is also alive in the League Cup and secured in the round of 16 of the European Champions League.
Porto will enter the field knowing of the results of Sporting and Benfica, their rivals in the cup fight, whose games were scheduled for Sunday, December 17. However, this changes little in relation to the need for victory, since stumbling blocks with lower investment capacity can be disastrous in a fierce title dispute as in the current season of the Portuguese Championship.
Especially when the stumble is at home, something that the Dragon Stadium has not yet seen in the current season. In their dominions, the Porto accumulated six consecutive victories and, in the sequence, had a tie with the Benfica. Although it was not the ideal result, it was acceptable. After all, he kept the team ahead of the rival.
The current form of the Maritime
The Marítimo has been the surprise of the current season of the Portuguese Championship. With 27 points (eight wins, three draws and three losses) he is fifth in the standings. It is, in theory, the highest position to be achieved by teams with lower investment capacity. It is well behind Porto, Sporting and Benfica, but only one point away from Braga, four placed.
This allows the club to even think about winning a place in the Europa League, which is reserved for the third and fourth placed. However, you may not even have to climb the leaderboard to achieve this. It is enough that one of the teams of the front platoon conquer the title of the Portuguese Cup for a new place to open. Thus, the fifth place could also advance.
Marítimo’s excellent position is mainly due to his home campaign. There were six wins and two draws. With 20 of his 27 points achieved in this way, he is the second best manager of the Portuguese Championship.
As a visitor, he showed improvement in the later rounds, managing to defeat Feirense (1-0) and draw with Moreirense (1 to 1). But there was still little. It is only the eleventh in the ranking that takes into account only the results obtained by clubs far from their domains.
History of the bouts between Porto and Marítimo
Porto defeated Marítimo by 2 to 1 in the previous season of the Portuguese Championship, at Estádio do Dragão. In the opponent’s field, it was in the 1 to 1.
One should not expect an easy victory against the good campaign that Marítimo has been doing in the 2017/2018 Portuguese Championship season. However, Porto is a large favorite and the best betting option. It has a price of 1.12 in Rivalo. Draw shows return of 8.00.
Despite the good campaign, the fragile attack, which marked only 15 goals in 14 matches, makes the Maritimo the great underdog of the round. If it expires, it will allow players to multiply by 20.00 the invested capital.