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Primeira Liga | Gameweek 31
Apr 26, 2024 at 8.15pm UK
Estadio Cidade de Barcelos

Gil Vicente
2 - 2

Toure (90+4'), Buatu Mananga (90+5')
Dominguez (34'), Neto (63'), Buatu Mananga (90+6')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Cristo (47', 82')
Milovanov (35')

Preview: Gil Vicente vs. Arouca - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Gil Vicente vs. Arouca - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Friday's Primeira Liga clash between Gil Vicente and Arouca, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Gil Vicente take on Arouca at the Estadio Cidade de Barcelos on Friday evening in the Primeira Liga, with the hosts looking to avoid being drawn further into the ongoing relegation battle.

The home side are 12th in the league but just three points above the drop zone with four games left of the season, while the visitors are in sixth and unable to move any higher up the table.

Match preview

A surprise fifth-placed finish in just their third season back in the top flight having been promoted in 2018-19 had Gil Vicente fans hopeful that their side would use that as a foundation to improve their standings in the league for future years.

That has not been the case though with the Roosters going on to finish 13th in the following campaign before finding themselves in a potential relegation battle this time around.

Gil Vicente had been operating around mid-table for large parts of this season, but a run of seven matches without victory, including four consecutive defeats, saw them fall into 14th, with manager Vitor Campelos losing his job in the process.

A crucial win in their previous outing against Moreirense made them the only team outside of the top four to win on matchday 30 and lifted them to 12th in the table, but they remain just three points above Portimonense, who occupy the relegation playoff spot.

Two of their final four fixtures pit Gil Vicente up against fellow relegation-battling sides, leaving the upcoming encounter with Arouca as a potentially vital game to extend their lead over the drop zone prior to those matches.

The visitors will be a tough side to beat though, sitting sixth in the table coming into this one, while they have not lost in any of the last 14 meetings between these two.

Arouca, however, have little left to play for as they trail fifth-placed Vitoria de Guimaraes by 13 points with four matches remaining, leaving them only able to finish as high as their current sixth place.

After finishing just two points above the bottom three in their first year back in the Primeira Liga in 2021-22, Arouca had an incredible rise up the table last season as they finished in fifth place.

They have done what the hosts could not after their fifth-place finish, backing it up with yet another positive season that has them competing to finish in the top six for consecutive campaigns.

Two losses in as many games in March saw their position in seventh put at risk, but the Arouquenses bounced back with three victories and a draw in the following four matches, creating an eight-point lead on eighth place and pushing them into sixth with four fixtures remaining.

Gil Vicente Primeira Liga form:

Arouca Primeira Liga form:

Team News

The hosts come into this game with a single injury concern, with defender Ruben Fernandes doubtful for this one having already missed last weekend's match against Moreirense.

That allowed for Jonathan Buatu-Mananga to make his debut for the side after signing in January, and the defender is likely to keep his place in the starting 11 after impressing in his first game.

As for the visitors, they are likely to be without Tiago Esgaio for the second match in a row after the defender was forced off in the 72nd minute of their 2-1 victory over Boavista.

Rafa Mujica has been enjoying a phenomenal season for Arouca scoring 20 goals in the league, including 16 in his last 16 outings for the club, and he is set to lead the line once again in this one.

Gil Vicente possible starting lineup:
Andrew; Pinto, Pereira, Buatu-Mananga, Buta; Fujimoto, Gbane, Dominguez; Correia, Alipourghara, Murilo

Arouca possible starting lineup:
Arruabarrena; Milovanov, Bambu, Montero, Weverson; Santos, Simao; Jason, Gonzalez, Sylla; Mujica

We say: Gil Vicente 0-2 Arouca

Despite ending their barren run with a victory in their previous outing, Gil Vicente have failed to beat Friday's opponents in any of the last 14 meetings between the two, and we expect that to continue with an Arouca victory in this one.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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Premier League Table
CSporting Lisbon34293296296790
5Vitoria de GuimaraesGuimaraes34196952381463
9Casa Pia34108163850-1238
10SC FarenseFarense34107174651-537
11Rio AveRio Ave3461993843-537
12Gil Vicente3499164252-1036
13Estoril PraiaEstoril3496194958-933
14Estrela Amadora34712153353-2033
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