- Matchday 19 kicks off at the Estadio da Luz, where first-place Benfica (-1064) are overwhelming favorites to claim all three points against bottom-half side Belenenses (+2900)
- The only team even remotely capable of catching Benfica, Porto (-312) are firm favorites but will have to be sharp for an away trip to Vitoria Setubal (+850), which has won two in a row and been active in the transfer market
- Sporting Braga (-122) are expected to beat visiting Sporting Lisbon (+320) in a match which would see the winner (likely) claim sole possession of third place in the table
Benfica owns a comfortable seven-point lead atop the Liga NOS table.
With lowly Belenenses slated to visit the league leaders and second-place Porto facing a tricky test to Porto, will the gap grow on Matchday 19 in Portugal?
Liga NOS Matchday 19 Odds
|Benfica||-2.5 (-123)||-1064||O 3.5 (-114)|
|Belenenses||+2.5 (+103)||+2900||U 3.5 (-106)|
|Rio Ave||-0.5 (+106)||+106||O 2.5 (-120)|
|Famalicao||+0.5 (-126)||+230||U 2.5 (+100)|
|Portimonense||pk, -0.5 (-122)||+111||O 2, 2.5 (-108)|
|Tondela||pk, +0.5 (+102)||+245||U 2, 2.5 (-112)|
|Santa Clara||-0.5 (+105)||+105||O 2, 2.5 (+102)|
|Pacos Ferreira||+0.5 (-125)||+250||U 2, 2.5 (-122)|
|Vit. Setubal||+1.5 (-119)||+850||O 2.5, 3 (-106)|
|Porto||-1.5 (-101)||-312||U 2.5, 3 (-114)|
|Maritimo||pk, -0.5 (-134)||+104||O 2, 2.5 (+108)|
|Desp. Aves||pk, +0.5 (+114)||+255||U 2, 2.5 (-128)|
|Gil Vicente||-0.5 (-119)||-119||O 2, 2.5 (+105)|
|Moreirense||+0.5 (-101)||+330||U 2, 2.5 (-125)|
|Boavista||+0.5 (-104)||+330||O 2, 2.5 (+100)|
|Vitoria Guimaraes||-0.5 (-116)||-116||U 2, 2.5 (-120)|
|Sporting Braga||-0.5, 1 (+103)||-122||O 2.5 (-118)|
|Sporting Lisbon||+0.5, 1 (-123)||+320||U 2.5 (-102)|
All odds taken Jan. 30
Pick 1: Benfica vs. Belenenses
After overachieving with a 9th-place finish last season, Belenenses (5-3-10) has seen its off-field turmoil has bled onto the pitch and sits near the drop zone.
Now — after losing four of their last five — is hardly the best time to visit high-flying Benfica (17-0-1), which hasn’t dropped points since August 24th in league play.
Belenenses manager Petit says his team is going to play for the win, which could be dangerous considering his team conceded seven goals at home against Braga earlier this month.
Back Benfica to fill the net.
Pick: Over 3.5 (-114)
Pick 2: Boavista vs. Vit. Guimaraes
It’s surprising to see Boavista (5-7-6) as such a large underdog at home against Vitoria Guimaraes (6-7-5), given that the two clubs are separated by one solitary win in the league table.
Neither side is in great form, with a combined two wins over their last stretches of five games.
The talent gap is not that large here, and Boavista has a tendency to stifle non-big 3 opponents at home. Guimaraes have drawn each of their last four away matches in league play.
Pick: Boavista +0.5 (-104)
Pick 3: Sporting Braga vs. Sporting Lisbon
Both Braga (9-3-6) and Sporting (10-2-6) sold talismanic players this week, though on much different scales.
Braga sent a relatively new star on the Liga NOS scene, Trincao, to Barcelona for 30M euro, while Sporting finally claimed a 55M+ euro payday from Manchester United for star creator Bruno Fernandes.
The Guerreiros have won four league matches on the trot and a rare trophy (Taça da Liga) under new boss Ruben Amorim, while Sporting have been soundly beaten by Porto, Benfica and Braga (Taça semi-final) over the past month.
Without the catalyst for much of their offense in Fernandes, can Sporting generate much to begin the new era following his departure? My money is on no.
Pick: Sporting Braga (-122)
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