São Paulo – Santos: An Open Game Between Two Sides That Struggle With Defensive Stability (3-2)
League leaders Santos suffered a painful defeat at the hands of São Paulo, to end a positive run that saw them take the lead in the Brasileiro. This was a very open game, with both sets of offenses dominating their defensive counterparts. Both teams opted for quick surges rather than constructed play, resulting in a free-flowing all-action affair.
Tactical analysis and match report by Luc Jeggo.
Santos came into the tie holding first place in the table, having recently overtaken Palmeiras. However, with the gap at just four points, any slip up against São Paulo could open the door for chasers Palmeiras. Santos manager Sampaoli persisted with starting Eduardo Sasha over new acquisition Fernando Uribe, who remained on the bench. Santos came into the match with a six game winning streak and entered the tie as favourites.
The big question on all of the São Paulo fans' lips was whether they would see a glimpse of either Dani Alves or Juanfran. Unfortunately the only time Dani Alves was seen was on camera and in the stands.
Promising wide forward Antony was also out injured and his absence was a loss for the red and white. Like their opponents, São Paulo came into the match on a good string of results, having not lost in their previous seven matches.
As can often be expected in a derby, the match between Santos and São Paulo started in chaotic fashion. Both teams were similar in many ways. Both pressed high, both attempted to build from the back and both employed . . .