Invincible and almost perfect. That was Sporting in the first 17 rounds of the championship, scoring 45 points out of a possible 51, a superlative return that matches the unexpected number of points rivals have left on the table. Rúben Amorim cannot accept the candidacy for the title, but it is not necessary to say it in words. Just do what the “Lions” have done this season, one win at a time, and in the logic of Amorim’s “game after game” there will be one more Tuesday before the next and nothing more than that. First it will be Gil Vicente in Barcelos (9pm, SPTV1), then it will be Paços de Ferreira in Alvalade and so on.
While the others stumble, the “lions” do their job without giving up the position of leader they have occupied since the sixth round. In this 18th round, the difference between the two closest opponents may increase due to the 2-2 draw between FC Porto and Sp. Braga. After a win, Sporting are eight points ahead of the national champions and eleven ahead of Minho, an advantage that has increased significantly over the last month but may disappear in some games. And that’s why Amorim doesn’t announce his candidacy.
“It’s a question of consistency. We had a small advantage a month ago, you can change the opposite in a month, and we know we are going to suffer a lot. We play well and win, we’ve already had bad times, but not a bad phase, and we’re going game after game, “warned Amorim, who also doesn’t have the time to believe that a club will beat its termination clause:” There is nothing to worry about. I didn’t think they’d pay for the Sp. Braga clause and two losses are enough to get ‘Sporting sonda Abel’ or anything else to appear in the papers. Football is the moment, it is better to enjoy the moment. “
Sporting will now take to the stage where there is one game a week, unlike rivals in the battle for the title, which still have European competitions and the Portuguese Cup on the agenda. For Amorim this will not necessarily be an advantage: “We have a small advantage not being in European competitions, but we have gained more advantages if we have had the same number of games as them. The opposite can happen, everything is very subjective. Winning the next game is all that matters. “
On the other hand, Gil Vicente will try another type of escape in order to get as far from the relegation areas as possible. At the start of this round, the Minho team were two points above the waterline and had great difficulty winning games this season, only four, one of which was against Boavista on the final day of the game. A result that coach Ricardo Soares would like to continue.