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Thursday, 22 March 2012 22:49

A tale of two goalkeepers: Gil Vicente make Taça da Liga final

Gil Vicente 2-2 Braga (Gil win on penalties)

Gil Vicente v BragaGil Vicente beat Braga tonight to book their place in the final of the Taça da Liga. The hosts took an early lead through Hugo Vieira, but goals from Lima and Barbosa put the Arsenalistas ahead by half time. With just two minutes remaining, a crass mistake from Braga goalkeeper Quim allowed Junior Caicara to equalise and set up a penalty shoot-out, where Gil prevailed, thanks to two saves from Brazilian goalkeeper Adriano.

Braga came into the match on a phenomenal run of form, having won 15 of their last 16 games. But Gil Vicente had received a big boost on Monday with an excellent 2-0 victory over Sporting, and it was the hosts who opened stronger; an impressive start that soon brought its reward. 

The ever lively Hugo Vieira was too quick for Braga’s centre-backs in the 13th minute, stealing the ball, advancing and dinking a fine finish over Quim. Hugo Viana then brought a save out of Gil goalkeeper Adriano from a free kick.

As the whirlwind start continued the visitors enjoyed a stroke of luck. Braga right-back Miguel Lopes hauled down Vieira as the speedy striker burst clean through, but the referee interpreted the incident as simulation, giving Vieira a yellow card. TV replays suggested a card for Lopes, possibly a red one, would have been a more correct decision.

Quick-fire double

On 25 minutes Braga were level. Excellent approach play by Mossoro led to a low cross, with Lima quick as flash beating his marker to score for the seventh successive match. Five minutes later the Arsenalistas were in front. Lima’s shot ricocheted to Helder Barbosa, who made no mistake.

Junior Caicara was close to scoring the equaliser for Gil as his well struck free-kick on the edge of the box whistled just wide. Play immediately switched to the other end and an inviting Viana cross was headed narrowly wide by Paulo Cesar to bring the curtain down on an exciting half.

Gil Vicente coach Paulo Alves brought on striker Ze Luis - on loan from Braga - at the interval and the big Cape Verdean immediately made his presence felt, heading just over. Back came Braga, with Lima volleying wide.

The game then went into something of a lull, with the visitors attempting to take the sting out the game and Gil struggling to create chances. Lima was uncharacteristically wasteful on 73 minutes when with just Adriano between him and net, the striker allowed the goalkeeper to save twice.

Late equaliser

To their credit Gil continued to push forward, but as the clock wound down and the chances did not come it appeared the Barcelos club’s run in the Taça da Liga, which included knocking out Sporting, was coming to an end.

However, with two minutes remaining Junior Caicara fired a hopeful shot towards goal from 25 yards. The strike was far from venomous, but veteran goalkeeper Quim made an awful mistake as the bobbling ball squirmed under his body and into the net.

There was still time for Lima to miss a golden opportunity to score the winner in stoppage time. It was Quim’s opposite number, Adriano, who proved the hero in the penalty shoot-out, saving from Barbosa and Ukra to send the home crowd into raptures of joy. 

Gil Vicente and Benfica will contest the Taça da Liga final in Coimbra on 14 April.

Gil Vicente:
Adriano, Rodrigo Galo, Halisson, Claudio, Caicara, Luis Manuel, Andre Cunha (Vilela, 58), Richard, Cesar Peixoto (Sciola, 76), Luis Carlos (Ze Luis, HT), Hugo Vieira

Quim, Miguel Lopes, Nuno Andre Coelho, Douglao, Elderson, Custodio, Hugo Viana (Djamal, 87), Mossoro (Rivera, 77), Barbosa, Paulo Cesar (Ukra, 66), Lima

[1-0] Hugo Vieira, 16
[1-1] Lima, 25
[1-2] Helder Barbosa, 31
[2-2] Caicara, 88

Tom Kundert

Comments (11)
11 Tuesday, 28 May 2013 11:56
Hey JohnSlb get your facts straight
10 Sunday, 25 March 2012 15:47
Artur isn't that good. If he was why does Benfica practically concede goals in every game??? Think about that.
Fair Play @Karl
9 Saturday, 24 March 2012 09:30
Quite possible the comment of the year.
Congratulations Gil
8 Saturday, 24 March 2012 00:41
Really enjoyable game last night. Of course we went there with the expectation that we could and would win the game but cup football is sometimes like this. Braga took their fot off the pedal in the second half. Lima had tow fantastic opportunities to kil the game off. Mossoro served one of them up on a plate. Np matter what anyone says a cup is a cup and it's silverware and its something Braga need to start doing to compete on a certan level witht he "so called big teams". The athmosphere was great although Gil decided to split them up at either end of the ground to dilute the support. It worked to some extent. My hat comes off to Gil for a great display. Congratulations to the three players Braga have loaed to Gil who will make their first cup final appearances. Just like Pizzi last season loaned players have come back to haunt us. The decision to bring on Rivera about 13 minutes from the end lost us the midfield battle and Gil could have won it in normal time. Well we are still in th running for the league and I don´t know Andre can say it is our best chance for silverware this season as befre tonight we were level with Benfica. That's the shortsightedness of some Benfica or Porto fans(not all so dotn start compalining) When a team is level with you in the league and you led them by 8 points only 5 weeks ago they are more than contenders for your place. They are serious contenders and if you hav to qualify for league champions football next year maybe you will finally give some respect for our club.

Regarding Quim's mistake. It happens. Quim has made a few mistakes this year but he has been very good on a regular basis. Quim has conceded less goals than Artur this season. Does that mean he has a better defence or is a better goalkeeper. Cup football is sometimes like that. A small error of judgement and things go wrong. The manager should probably not have risked bringing in Rivera at such a finely balanced stage of the game. It happens. I'll be cheering for Gil in the final.
7 Friday, 23 March 2012 17:49
Firstly, it's great for the Liga in general that we have Gil Vicente in this final and Academica in the Taca final...it shows that the medium teams in the Liga are improving and that this league is not just about the top 4.

As for Quim, he was never a great keeper in my opinion, way too small and prone to errors like this. Artur is the first good keeper Benfica have had since Preud'Homme (in fact we have two good keepers at the moment...all or nothing, the way of our club lol!!).

Unfortunately for Braga, this is probably their best opportunity for silverware this season gone. As impressive as they have been in the Liga, I still have serious doubts they will go all the way and actually win it, they have tough fixtures coming up, and of course end the season at the Alvalade. Sporting will definitely want to beat the team who directly denied them Champions League football next season, and give their fans a final cheer.

As much as Braga's efforts so far have to be applauded, I still strongly believe the Liga champion will ultimately end up being either Benfica or Porto. But Braga must be praised for making this season a genuine 3 horse race!!! And I say it again, this has been the most exciting Liga season in many years, all of the top 4 have had much to cheer about in different ways, while the likes of Gil Vicente, Maritimo and Academica have proved that this league is improving in leaps and bounds...
Miz/Ohio, USA
6 Friday, 23 March 2012 15:40
You're comment gave me a good laugh.

At the end of the day, Braga, just like the Benfica, Porto, and Sporting matches, should have beat Gil and had controlled most of their games. The thing that keeps helping Gil which most smaller teams lack, is the will to keep fighting for the full 90mins. No matter how out matched they are, they still push for the win when most other teams would have given up.

I'll give them credit and as much as it's easy to say that Benfica will win their 4th back to back cup, Gil will be no pushovers and have all the potential of pulling off another upset before this season is over.
5 Friday, 23 March 2012 14:37
Bryan... Really? Really? Really? REALLY? Werent u the jabroni who made fun of Benfica for getting rid of Quim in favor for frango Roberto??? Whats da matter now? your so freaking werid man. i dont think ur human.
I bet artur is wanted or eduardo
4 Friday, 23 March 2012 13:04
Hey bryan wasn't you the guy who praised quim so much saying he is a great goalkeeper and stole him from Benfica lol and I swear you were the same guy who said artur was a bad goalie I bet you wish he played for braga yesterday LOL cofee cup or not it is still a trophy and one braga can't get their hands on
Fantastic Job
3 Friday, 23 March 2012 12:28
Wow, this can't be the same Bryan that lauded the move of getting Quim. Actually went on about how Braga stole him from Benfica.

This is a "coffee cup", so I excuse Braga. They have the possibility of doing something special, so all effort should be geared towards the league title.

As for Gil Vicente, what a tremendous job. Their scoring and defense leaves a bit to be desired, but so does every other teams around them in the standings. They have tried to play attractive futebol all year, and their fan base has been tremendous.
I've made my feelings known about this "cup", but as a Benfiquista I want to win everything. I almost wish we were out of it, so Gil Vicente could nab it. Then again, Benfica should be well aware of Gil Vicente's resolve verse the big boys.
2 Friday, 23 March 2012 11:27
Go back to Benfica and make your frangos there!
Gil Cinderella
1 Friday, 23 March 2012 01:13
amazing to witness this squad give all top four teams a go this year.....they deserve to be in the final!

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