Saturday, April 11, 2009

Sterling Moss and Dragões v Estrela da Amadora match preview

In 1955 British auto racing legend Sterling Moss won the Mille Miglia, a remarkable open-road 1,000 "Roman" mile race in Italy in the the record time of 10 hours, 7 minutes and 47 seconds. The race hasn't been run in over forty years yet the event lives on in infamy with enthusiasts of the roadster. Quick review of those numbers reveal a stunning 157.65km/h average for over ten hours and for classic motor sports enthusiasts it is remembered for both Mr. Moss' aggressive tactics but also the intelligent planning of his navigator. One of the key ingredients to their success was his navigator, Denis Jenkinson, unfurling a long scroll of diagrams and navigational instruction as they raced through the countryside from Bresia to Rome and back. Of motor sport legends, Mr. Moss and magnificent piece of machinery, Mercedes 300 SLR, rank in hushed tones.

In an odd twist of fate, Dragões manager Jesualdo Ferreira is in desperate need of such navigational ability as he makes his way through this weekend. Following Porto stunning draw against Manchester United in the Champions League, they sit on the verge of upsetting the heavy favourites when the second leg comes to Estádio do Dragão this Wednesday.

However prior to that affair, Porto must address domestic play and cannot afford giving up points in their tight battle to ward off Sporting. Sitting first in the table their narrow four point lead over Lisbon rivals provides little cushion, thus making Estrela da Amadora visit to Estádio do Dragão Saturday evening a tricky situation.

Whist the Porto manager has both Lisandro López, Tomás Costa, Nelson Benítez and Jorge Fucile out of the squad list, he is likely to ease back on the throttle just a morsel and use Ernesto Farías and Andrés Madrid in the starting eleven. Following the match of-course there will be no reason to shift down as its straight-ahead against Man Utd.