Braga took an important step towards qualifying for the Champions League today, winning 2-1 in Madeira. The “arsenalistas”, third in La Liga, benefited from the defeat of fourth-placed Sporting, thus increasing the distance to eight points after 20 days.
In this Sunday’s match, Maritimo took the lead in the 38th minute, but Braga hit back in the first half, first through Banja in the 40th minute and then Urus Racic in the 45+3, converting a penalty.
Let’s remember that third place in the league gives access to the Champions League qualifiers.
Braga made five changes from the win over Benfica that saw them progress to the Portuguese Cup semi-finals, with Paulo Oliveira, Cristian Borja, Andre Castro, Alvaro Jalo and Banja replacing Vitor Tormena. Nuno Sequeira. , the suspended Al Musrati and Iuri Medeiros, with Abel Ruiz remaining out of the starting options.
Maritimo dominated almost the entire first half of the match, orchestrating many situations close to the goal with Mateus having to stop André Vidigal’s powerful shot.
The Madeirans’ goal came after a free-kick converted by Bruno Xadas, with Paulo Oliveira tackling the ball first but leaving it at the mercy of another effort from René Santos, who hit the ‘wall’ ‘arsenalista “, but it went to the feet of Brian Riascos, who scored the first goal for the ‘Verde Rubros’.
The island’s euphoria was short-lived, with Braga equalizing two minutes later through Banja, who finished superbly when he appeared free between the Maritimista centre-backs and caught Makaridze by surprise.
Already in compensation, Minho reached the advantage, after a maximum punishment, punishing a hand on the ball from Val Soares near the bottom line. Midfielder Racic turned the score around for the “warriors”.
In front of almost 10,000, their best attendance this season, Maritimo continued in the second half to try to salvage at least a point, with Claudio Wink beating Alvaro Jalo and crossing for Andre Vidigal, who on the left saw the shot to exit by skimming the second post.
The search for a favorable result proved an even more difficult task for the home side, who were reduced to 10, after the sending off of new arrival Edgar Costa, who was on the pitch for only a minute and ended up being cautioned with two yellows following protests.
In the same move, coach Jose Gomes also saw straight red after entering the pitch to protest with referee Rui Costa.
Game at Estádio do Marítimo, Funchal.
Maritimo – Braga, 2-1.
At half time: 2-1.
1-0, Riascos, 38 minutes.
1-1, Banja, 40.
1-2, Racic, 45+3 (penalty).
– Maritime: Makaridze, Cláudio Winck, Zainadine, René Santos, Vítor Costa, Val Soares (Edgar Costa, 81), Beltrame (Chucho Ramírez, 62), Bruno Xadas (João Afonso, 81), André Vidigal, Pablo Moreno (Feli) ), 72) and Riascos (Leo Pereira, 62).
(Substitutes: Marcelo Carné, Moisés Mosquera, Matheus Costa, Chucho Ramírez, Edgar Costa, Félix Correia, João Afonso, Paulinho and Leo Pereira).
Coach: Jose Gomes.
– SC Braga: Matheus, Victor Gómez, Paulo Oliveira, Niakaté, Cristian Borja (Nuno Sequeira, 74), Racic, Castro, André Horta (Rodrigo Gomes, 46), Pizzi (Abel Ruiz, 57), Álvaro Djaló (Bruma, 7 ) ) ) and Banja (Pedro Santos, 90+4).
(Substitutes: Tiago Sá, Tormena, Serdar, Nuno Serqueira, Rodrigo Gomes, Abel Ruiz, Joe Mendes, Bruma and Pedro Santos).
Coach: Arthur Jorge.
Referee: Rui Costa (AF Porto).
Disciplinary measures: Yellow cards to Rodrigo Gomes (78), Claudio Wink (78), Edgar Costa (two in 83), Jose Gomes (83), Mateus (84) and Nuno Sequeira (90+2). Red card accumulation on Edgar Costa (83).
Attendance: 9,938 viewers.