By News Team
3rd June 2020
Following the success of the Bundesliga’s return, it’s the turn of the Portuguese Primeira Liga to make its comeback this week.
And with just one point separating the top two, the stage is all set for a fascinating end to the 2019/20 campaign.
Can Porto keep hold of top spot?
Benfica have dominated the Primeira Liga in recent years, winning five of the last six titles and boasting 37 titles in all, nine more than closest rivals Porto. However, it’s Porto who top the table as the division makes it return on Wednesday night, sitting just one point clear of Benfica with 10 games left to go.
Inspired this term by the likes of Alex Telles, Francisco Soares and Ze Luis, Sergio Conceicao’s Porto will fancy their chances of holding onto first place and securing just a second title in seven seasons – and at an odds-on price of 3/4, they are favourites to come out on top come the end of the campaign.
But with games still to come against both Braga and Sporting Lisbon, the Primeira Liga’s third and fourth-placed teams, Porto still have plenty of work to do. Up first, they also face a tricky trip to seventh-placed Famalicao on Wednesday, where they are 2/5 for the win.
Benfica’s title experience to count?
In contrast, Benfica have the slightly easier run-in and also have fixtures still to play against both Portimonense and Desportivo Aves, the division’s bottom two sides, who have picked up just 29 points between them this season.
The challenge for Benfica, who are priced at 21/20 for the title, will be hitting the ground running upon their return, having picked up just one win from their last six before the break – they restart their campaign at home to 14th placed Tondela on Thursday, where they are 3/20 favourites for victory.
Bruno Lage’s men have title-winning experience on their side, and in Carlos Vinicius and Pizzi, they also have the division’s two top scorers at their disposal, with 29 goals between them this season.
With Braga and Sporting both priced next for the title at 1000/1, given they’re 14 and 18 points off the top respectively, it’s clear we’re in for a two-horse race – and what a two-horse race it’s set to be.
Vinicius and Pizzi in Golden Boot fight
Elsewhere, it’s also rather tight at the top of the Primeira Liga’s top goalscorer chart, with the aforementioned Carlos Vinicius and Pizzi of Benfica leading the pack. Just one goal separates the two, with Vinicius racking up 15 and Pizzi on 14.
At 1/5, Vinicius is the hot favourite, with Pizzi priced at 3/1 – and given Pizzi’s goals have come from midfield, Vinicius should more than fancy his chances. Former Napoli man Vinicius has achieved his tally in considerably less playing time to boot – in just 1,302 minutes, compared to Pizzi’s 1,984.
Braga’s Paulinho, Gil Vicente’s Sandro Lima and Moreirense ‘s Fabio Abreu, meanwhile, all sit next in line on 10 goals apiece, but priced at 20/1, 33/1 and 50/1 respectively, Vinicius and Pizzi are the clear frontrunners here.