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Jan 16, 2022 at 3.30pm UK
Santa ClaraSanta Clara
Costa (23'), Antonio (40')
Morita (9')
FT(HT: 2-0)
Boselli (78', 88')
Agra (45')

Preview: Santa Clara vs. Tondela - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Santa Clara vs. Tondela - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Primeira Liga clash between Santa Clara and Tondela, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

An important game in the bottom half of the Primeira Liga table takes place on Sunday, as Santa Clara welcome Tondela to the Estadio de Sao Miguel.

A shock victory over defending champions Sporting Lisbon has seen the hosts jump up to 14th spot, now sitting level on points with their visitors.

Match preview

With just 10 points from the opening 11 games of the Primeira Liga season, Santa Clara's hopes for survival had started to look bleak, but Os Acoreanos have experienced an upturn in form, beginning with a commendable 2-2 draw away at sixth-placed Estoril Praia.

They have since gone on to win three of their last five league games, starting with hard-fought victories over Arouca and Vitoria de Guimaraes.

After a narrow defeat to Pacos de Ferreira, they faced the particularly tough test of a home clash with Sporting Lisbon, but Os Acoreanos defied the odds to hand the defending champions their first defeat of the season.

Jean Patric and Lincoln restored parity after the visitors went ahead on two separate occasions, before Ricardinho netted the decisive goal in the 78th minute to add a fourth notch in their wins column for this term.

As a result of their improvements recently, Os Acoreanos, now under the new management of Mario Silva, find themselves outside of the drop zone, although, with only one point between themselves and the bottom three, they will know they cannot afford to let up if they are to further boost their claim to avoid the drop.

Their visitors will also arrive with confidence following an upturn in their own form.

After thrashing Sunday's opponents 3-0 on the opening day of the season, Tondela had to endure a poor run of form, losing 11 of their next 14 league matches.

They have seemingly improved since the turn of the year, though, firstly arresting a slump with a 2-1 win over Moreirense as Manu Hernando netted the winner in the 11th minute of added time.

Pako Ayestaran's side then looked to have sealed a 1-0 win away at Boavista, only for the hosts to draw level late on, before they returned to winning ways with a hard-fought 1-0 victory away to Rio Ave, booking their place in the Taca de Portugal semi-finals.

CDT now look to stretch their unbeaten run to four games in all competitions and put separation between themselves and their hosts, as well as the bottom three.

Santa Clara Primeira Liga form:
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W

Tondela Primeira Liga form:
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • W
  • D

Tondela form (all competitions):
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • W

Team News

After an eye-catching result against the defending champions, Santa Clara are unlikely to make many changes heading into Sunday.

However, key centre-back Mikel Villanueva has returned from a suspension and will hope to reclaim his place in the starting XI.

Jean Patric will continue to feature in the front three after his goal last time out, with Rui Costa and Crysan expected to complete the attacking line with the support of Lincoln.

Tondela could also head in with an unchanged side after their positive run of results, with Modibo Sagnan and Manu Hernando set to partner up at the heart of the back four.

Renat Dashadov will be pushing for a starting berth after his decisive goal off the bench in the cup win last time out, with Daniel forced to battle to keep his place.

Santa Clara possible starting lineup:
Pereira; Sagna, Boateng, Villanueva, Mansur; Lincoln, Morita, Nene; Crysan, Costa, Patric

Tondela possible starting lineup:
Niasse; Bebeto, Sagnan, Hernando, Khacef; Barbosa, Augusto, Undabarrena; Agra, Dashadov, Boselli

We say: Santa Clara 1-1 Tondela

After previous poor runs, both sides will now come in with renewed confidence, and we cannot quite pick a winner.

Santa Clara showed an impressive side to their game against Sporting Lisbon and may be further encouraged by the introduction of a new manager, but CDT have what it takes to leave with a point.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data

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Primeira Liga Table
2Sporting Lisbon21172241132853
5Gil Vicente219753224834
6Vitoria de GuimaraesGuimaraes218673226630
7Estoril PraiaEstoril216962524127
10Santa ClaraSanta Clara216692539-1424
12Pacos de FerreiraPacos de Ferreira214981524-921
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