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Portimonense v Gil Vicente 17th February 2016

In Algarve, Portugal, soccer, Sports - football, Sports - football, soccer on February 19, 2016 by cubsur51 Tagged: ,

Portimonense v Gil Vicente 17th February 2016

Portuguese Second Division. Both teams are vying for promotion to the Superliga (Benfica, Sporting, FC Porto etc) and before the game both had 46 points from 29 games and were fifth and sixth. Midweek matches in this division are almost always played in the afternoons. Attendances are pitiful. The average attendance so far this season for the whole division is 798. Only three teams are averaging over 1,000 fans a game and if the likes of Porto and Sporting’s B teams are discounted, there are six teams averaging less than 500.

Obviously working on a Wednesday afternoon is not a high priority in Portimão. The attendance of 740 was only slightly below their average of 776. There were a lot of student aged people plus a number of tourists. Admission is 10 Euros for non-members. Facilities for spectators are minimal. There is no programme or anything like that. There is a mildly hysterical PA announcer to at least tell you who’s playing.

There is no bar etc on the non-members side, just a small trailer from which beer and water is sold. There is no cover from the elements anywhere, so if it rains you get wet. That’s the reason for their lowest attendance of the season, 324, on that same day Albufeira was hit by flooding. Despite farcical conditions the game had to go ahead as it was being televised.

The stadium and outskirts are patrolled by around twenty armed policemen. There is a full bag search and pat down for guns, knives and bottles as you go in. There are also half a dozen stewards dressed in paramilitary uniform keeping a watch for unruly behaviour.

As if! The only time the crowd is raised to any kind of passion is when any decision is given against their team, on any occasion when an opposition player makes any kind of tackle and general abuse if a home player misses a goal chance.

The overall standard of play is poor, cheating and gamesmanship are part and parcel of proceedings which often makes a poor game even worse, sometimes positively distasteful.

Match officials are not strong, but usually dish out yellow cards a-plenty. Wednesday’s referee was fairly lenient, only four yellow cards were shown despite some ridiculous time wasting by both sides and one dive (simulation) by a visiting forward that was so badly executed that the entire crowd burst out laughing. He felt a tiny shove and went down in the penalty area, yelling loudly. What he didn’t know was that the push had come from a team-mate who was running for the same ball!

Here’s a picture, the rest are at http://1drv.ms/1Lx9QPz

This is the only goal of the game, scored by 23 Zambujo (black and white and half hidden among the defenders. It was the 75th minute, after a free-kick by Portimonense captain Pessoa from just outside the penalty area had been well saved but hot held. Zambujo was there for the rebound and knocked it just inside the post.

Portimonense now have 49 points and are up one place to 5th but six points off a promotion place with sixteen games remaining.

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