Gil Vicente have been playing in Liga Portugal since the 2019-20 season and have finished in the bottom half for two consecutive seasons. However, their best placement came in the 2021-22 season, when they finished fifth and qualified for the UEFA Europa Conference League. They accumulated 51 points last term, and it was their most successful campaign in recent years. This season, Gil Vicente have experienced a turbulent campaign thus far. They started the 2022-23 Liga Portugal season in poor form and were in the midst of the relegation battle. However, they have massively picked up the pace since returning from the World Cup break and are now placed tenth after collecting 29 points.
How has Gil Vicente performed this season?
In Liga Portugal 2022/2023, Gil Vicente have registered eight wins, five draws, and ten losses. Eight of these losses came in the first 13 matches, with only two wins. However, Gil Vicente have registered six wins and two draws in ten matches since December, with a 60% win rate. Daniel Sousa’s side is unbeaten in their last five league outings with three wins and two draws, including a famous 2-1 victory against FC Porto. Below are some stats reflecting Gil Vicente’s strong run of form in recent weeks.
The above viz shows the percentile rank of Gil Vicente’s stats compared to other teams in Liga Portugal 2022/23. Daniel Sousa’s team likes to keep possession of the ball and does well in terms of attempting passes and finding key passes. They have utilised their on-the-ball abilities well and have a high rank to show in attacking indicators like xG, penalty area entries, and crosses. The team is able to make a decent amount of recoveries per 90 as well as restrict their opponents to a lower xG per shot compared to the other teams.
Finding the back of the net
One of the reasons for Gil Vicente’s revamped form has been their ability to score goals when needed. They have scored 25 goals thus far with an average xG rate of 1.55. Centre-forward Fran Navarro is in prolific form and leads the team from the front, scoring 13 of these goals. On average, the Gilistas create nearly 29 positional attacks per match and attempt 12.22 shots with 36% accuracy.
In the last five league matches, Gil Vicente have scored seven goals. They averaged more than 12 shots in these matches with a similar rate of accuracy. The above xG map shows that the team has been able to penetrate the six-yard box to net a couple of goals and has also tried their luck from distance and scored once. The 6.39 xG in non-penalty goals accumulated during this span is almost in line with the six non-penalty goals scored by the team.
The viz above shows the attacking regions of Gil Vicente from their recent 2-1 victory against Porto. Daniel Sousa’s side rallied valiantly after conceding early as two Porto players were sent off in the match. They created 30 positional attacks in total and took four shots from them. They took nine shots in total, with four on target, and ended the match with 2.32 xG. This victory increased the team’s confidence further and will be one of the highlights of their current campaign.
Room for improvement in defence
Gil Vicente have done reasonably well to find the back of the net, but their overall defensive record can improve to propel them higher in the rankings. They have conceded 29 goals thus far, four more than they have managed to score. The team concedes 13.17 shots, which is more than what they take, along with 1.6 xGA.
Gil Vicente plays with a reasonably high backline. They commit fouls higher up the pitch, and they defend well inside their penalty box. In the last five matches, they have conceded only three goals and committed zero fouls in the penalty box. On average, Gil Vicente contests 67.48 defensive duels and 34.3 aerial duels. They win more aerial duels than their opponents and can improve their win rate in defensive duels. The team also makes 40.7 interceptions and gives up 14.61 fouls.
The viz above shows the recoveries made by Gil Vicente players against Porto. They made 75 recoveries in total and restricted their powerful opponents to nine attempts on goal, with only three on target. The team also made a few of these recoveries inside the penalty box, which proved crucial in claiming the maximum points. Due to these valiant efforts, Porto ended the match with a lower xG value of 1.43.
Another area where Gil Vicente players have done well is restricting their opponents’ attempts on goal. In the last five matches, they have blocked 11 shots with a combined xG value of 0.72. Five of these blocks have been inside the penalty box and have proven crucial in helping the team extend their positive run of results.
Gil Vicente’s strong run of form has propelled them away from a relegation threat and put them near the top half of Liga Portugal. While it will be a tough task to make this campaign as successful as the last one, they can certainly aim for a higher finish than their current tenth position. To achieve this, the team will have to prolong their consistent run of results and perform better in attack and defence.
Visuals via Wyscout and TFA data viz engine