Palmeiras played well enough to guarantee the three points, never allowing weak Botafogo to threatened Prass between the posts. Palmeiras resume second position with 50 points, 8 behind leaders Flamengo, who yesterday beat Athletico away 2-0.
Prass; Marcos Rocha, Luan, Vitor Hugo and Diogo Barbosa; Thiago Santos (Matheus Fernandes), Bruno Henrique and Zé Rafael (Lucas Lima); Scarpa, Dudu and Deyverson (Henrique Dourado, making his re-debut for the club).
Luan and Thiago Santos received yellow cards.
Thiago Santos substituted Felipe Melo and had a superb evening: in addition to winning every dispute for the ball, the defensive midfielder in style initiated and concluded the play that resulted in Palmeiras’ winner. Unfortunately, the yellow card takes him out of the next game.
Palmeiras created plenty of opportunities, but seized only one of them to score the sole goal of the evening. Botafogo never threatened our goal, but there is always the risk of a fluke shot. Palmeiras should have increased the lead yesterday, in spite of Cavalieri’s brilliant keeper performance for Botafogo.
Palmeiras has always been a pressure cooker. The comparative tranquillity during the last two years under Paulo Nobre is but a memory. Driven by ambition, greed and fame, targets are selected and moves are being made, with club president Galiotte unable or unwilling to interfere. Spill-over on the squad is inevitable. As if the task at hand was not difficult enough, without having to relate to in-house backstabbing.
On Wednesday Palmeiras face bottom-dwellers Chapecoense at the Allianz Parque. As the stadium hosted two shows last weekend, the pitch will probably be in terrible conditions, which will facilitate the opponent defensive strategy. However, Palmeiras’ technical superiority should guarantee the three points. If players are motivated, that is.
Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!
– – – ooo – – –
by Augusto Anteghini Oazi & Kristian Bengtson