In this matchday of the 2017/2018 Liga NOS, Marítimo, who finished 6th last season will meet Paços Ferreira, which placed 13th on the previous season.
The islanders were able to qualify for the Europa League, despite their negative ending to the season (only 1 win in their last 5 matches), while Paços fought for relegation, and finished only 4 points above the relegation zone.
Both teams have kept their managers, with Daniel Ramos leading Marítimo and Vítor Seabra leading Paços.
Marítimo’s players go into this match already with 2 official matches played, on the 3rd qualifying round for the Europa League, where they faced and eliminated Botev Plovdiv. The latest was last Thursday where they beat them 2-0 at home in Estádio dos Barreiros. However, they will now face a much tougher opponent next round, Dinamo Kiev, which should see them fail to reach the group stage, especially since it is a 2 legged affair.
Last season, with the arrival of Daniel Ramos, the team has made their stadium a true fortress, achieving several positive results and having one of the best home wins percentage of the whole league.
Regarding Paços de Ferreira, on a personal note, I don’t really understand their choice to keep Vítor Seabra as their manager, considering that the young coach hasn’t really shown enough quality to take Paços Ferreira to the level that the “beavers” had already reached.
Anyway, it is positive that he got the board’s vote of confidence to keep his job, which could result in a pleasant surprise/confirmation. The team has already played 1 official match, beating Arouca away 2-1, in a league cup match.
Maritimo vs Paços Ferreira Pick:
Marítimo, as I have stated before, is clearly one of the strongest teams playing at home and last season they beat almost every opponent they faced at Estádio dos Barreiros.
Ãfter they got this new manager Daniel Ramos (although they are still a bit lackluster away from home) and, I believe we will see the same this season.
Facing this Paços Ferreira side, which seems to be far from their past “glory” years and who will be playing in a really tough round.
I believe that the hosts will come out on top and by a nice margin (I’d say 2-0, 3-1), even because the islanders are motivated by their good performance against the Bulgarians in their Europa League tie.