Porto-Benfica Preview: Aguias can wrap up title with away win against rivals
Jorge Jesus' men could lift their first Primeira Liga in three years with victory, while the Dragao would go top if they can triumph in front of their own fans
By Daniel Edwards
Porto will be able to call on the talents of Alex Sandro after the Brazilian full-back recovered from a muscle strain to be declared fit. The ex-Santos man has been training throughout the week and is said to be at 100 per cent for the decisive clash, although Maicon, who trained apart from the rest of the Dragao, is still an uncertainty.
Benfica will give Argentina international Enzo Perez until the last minute to prove his fitness. The 27-year-old was expected to miss Saturday's encounter with a thigh strain, but has shown improvements in training and could still make it.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Porto remain unbeaten in the Primeira Liga, but could well miss out on the title without losing a single match.
- With two games left, they trail Saturday's rivals by two points. Defeat would hand Benfica the title, while a win would put the Dragao one point ahead going into the final day.
- Porto are looking for a third-successive Primeira triumph, having recorded back-to-back titles in 2010-11 and 2011-12.
- Benfica are the league leaders with 74 points from 28 games. In that run they have also netted 73 times, seven goals more than their rivals for the title.
- The Aguias' top scorer is Lima (right), with 17 in the league. He trails Porto sharpshooter Jackson Martinez, who has netted 25 times.
- Coach Jorge Jesus has won a trophy every year in his four at the Benfica helm; but the last time he lifted the league title was back in 2009-10.
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Top 3 Predictions
Porto 2-1 Benfica
- 18.24 %
Porto 1-2 Benfica
- 15.2 %
Porto 3-1 Benfica
- 9.12 %
|Taça de Portugal (TDeP)||Mar 26, 2014||Porto 1 - Benfica 0|
|Portugal - Premier League (POR1)||Jan 12, 2014||Benfica 2 - Porto 0|
|Portugal - Premier League (POR1)||May 11, 2013||Porto 2 - Benfica 1|
|Portugal - Premier League (POR1)||Jan 13, 2013||Benfica 2 - Porto 2|
|Portugal - Premier League (POR1)||Mar 2, 2012||Benfica 2 - Porto 3|
|Apr 13, 2014||Sporting Braga 1 - Porto 3||POR1|
|Apr 10, 2014||Sevilla 4 - Porto 1||EL|
|Apr 6, 2014||Porto 3 - Academica Coimba 1||POR1|
|Apr 3, 2014||Porto 1 - Sevilla 0||EL|
|Mar 30, 2014||CD Nacional 2 - Porto 1||POR1|
|20||Osvaldo Nicolás Fabián Gaitán||Midfielder|
|35||Enzo Nicolás Pérez||Midfielder|
The Colombian has followed in the giant footsteps of compatriot and former Porto star Radamel Falcao, netting 25 goals to lead the scoring charts and keep his side in the chase. Porto will be looking to him to down Benfica and put them in the driving seat.
The Uruguayan right-back is a tough, tenacious performer, and has been a mainstay of the Benfica team for over six years. He will have the responsibility of keeping stars like James and Martinez quiet, knowing that a point could well be enough for his side.
Porto need a win in what is a key match to decide the fate of the 2012-13 Primeira Liga title. That necessity, plus Benfica's busier schedule as they prepare for a Europa League final, should play in the Dragao's favour as they seek victory.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed