Estoril Praia are 15th in the Liga Portugal 2022-23 standings, having taken 22 points from 21 matches so far. They currently have a six-point buffer over the relegation zone with a third of the season left to play. However, a string of poor results over the last few weeks has raised doubts about whether Estoril will be able to stay in the top division for another season.
Last season, Estoril finished ninth in Liga Portugal with 39 points in the bag after winning the second division the season prior and earning promotion. Compared to the current campaign, Estoril Praia’s form is poor overall, with six wins, four draws, and as many as 11 losses already. They lost 13 matches during the entirety of last season, winning nine and drawing the other 12 games. Now, as the Canarinhos fight for survival, we look into some of the stats that show the areas of struggle.
Overall performance this season
Estoril Praia enjoyed a positive start to the campaign, but their form has taken a downturn since October, with only two wins in 17 matches. This includes losing to the three clubs currently languishing in the relegation zone: Maritimo, Santa Clara, and Pacos de Ferreira. As a result of this poor run, manager Nelson Verissimo was recently relieved of his duties after a mutual agreement with the club to terminate his contract. Heading into a tough run of upcoming fixtures that includes the likes of Sporting Lisbon and Porto, Estoril will have to show resolve and resilience to pull themselves away from the danger zone.
Estoril have scored only 19 goals and conceded 29 in Liga Portugal 2022–23. While their record is slightly better compared to the bottom three teams, there is still a greater disparity between the number of goals they score and concede compared to last season. The viz above shows the percentile rank of the team’s stats in comparison to other teams in Liga Portugal. They possess a low rank in almost all the indicators in the attacking, possession, and defence departments. While they seem to be faring reasonably in areas such as possession rate, PPDA, and shots, the overall stats are underwhelming.
Struggles in front of the goal
One of the reasons behind Estoril’s poor form is their inability to convert their chances. They have scored at the rate of 0.9 goals per match while averaging a higher xG rate of 1.23. The Canarinhos create 25.38 positional attacks per match and attempt 11.38 shots with a 33% accuracy rate. Last season, they generated lower numbers but yet managed to find the back of the net more frequently and secure positive results.
The team’s shot map viz from the last five matches highlights the struggles in attacking play. Despite having 82 shots, Estoril has only scored three goals during this period. They have shown a tendency to shoot from range, and most of the attempts are targeted towards the centre of the goal. A good chunk of the attempts have missed the target or been blocked by opposition players. The above viz shows also indicates that Estoril have struggled to penetrate the six-yard box.
Another reason for the team’s overall poor form is because of Estoril’s ability to play the ball effectively. The team sees 50.9% of the ball, buts attempts 369 passes per match with 82.8% accuracy compared to the 382 passes made by their opponents (82.7% accuracy). The above viz shows most of the ball progression has been made in the wide areas rather than through the centre. This shows that Estoril likes to penetrate the ball into the box from wide areas. They tried the same thing in the last five matches but struggled from the left side.
Troubles in defence
Estoril possesses a better defensive record than the other relegation candidates, but their defence has leaked crucial goals throughout the season. This has resulted in the team dropping important points, which has contributed to their downfall. The Canarinhos concede 13.81 shots on average, which is more than what they take. They have conceded 1.38 goals per match while averaging a higher xGA rate of 1.73. In the last five matches, Estoril have conceded eight goals.
Estoril plays with a high line and is more involved in defensive actions in the defensive and middle thirds. They show a tendency to commit fouls higher up the pitch and have given away one foul in the penalty box in the last five matches. Overall, Estoril averages 62.09 defensive duels and 32.59 aerial duels but wins a lesser amount of these contests compared to their opponents. The team makes 40.67 interceptions and gives up 14.32 fouls, which are slightly higher figures compared to their opponents.
Estoril’s poor run of form has placed them in the relegation scramble. They will have to embark on a consistent run of results and perform better in attack and defence in the upcoming matches to extend their stay in Liga Portugal. The new manager will want his team to be more clinical with the chances they create and find some motivation to get through these tough times.
Visuals via TFA data viz engine