Two teams will be aiming for a place in the semi-finals of the Taca de Portugal when Rio Ave will host Tondela at the Estadio dos Arcos on Wednesday.
Rio Ave will be returning to action for the first time this year on Wednesday, after having seen their games against Covilha and Chaves being postponed due to multiple COVID-19 cases.
They were last in action on December 23, when they defeated Belenenses through penalty shootouts to advance into the quarter-finals of the Taca de Portugal.
Pedro Nuno had put Belenenses ahead within the opening nine minutes before Hugo Gomes restored the game to level, and with nothing to separate the sides after extra time, Rio Ave took a 6-5 win on penalties.
Before that, Miguel Cardoso’s side had ended their three-game losing run when they took a 1-0 win over Casa Pia in the Segunda Liga on December 19.
Rio Ave will now focus on maintaining their fine run in the Taca de Portugal, where they have scored 10 goals and conceded three in five games so far.
Meanwhile, Tondela put up an impressive performance when they came from behind to secure a 3-1 victory over Estoril Praia in the round of 16 on December 21.
After Tiago Dantas and Leonardo Ruiz scored for either side in the first half, Tondela improved their game in the second half as Juan Manuel Boselli and Daniel dos Anjos scored to turn the game around.
Tondela have won five, drawn one and lost 11 of their 17 league games to collect 16 points, level on points with Santa Clara and Vizela.
Next up is an opposing side who they have not defeated in each of the last three meetings, losing twice and picking up a draw since a 4-2 victory back in 2019.
Rio Ave vs Tondela head to head
The two teams have previously met on 12 occasions in the Primeira Liga, where Rio Ave have won in 4 while Tondela have won 3, and they have drawn 5. Tondela have scored 19 goals and conceded 21. Rio Ave won 2-1 at home in their last encounter on February 9 2021.
Rio Ave 2-2 Tondela 01/02/19
Rio Ave 2-4 Tondela 15/09/19
Tondela 1-2 Rio Ave 22/02/20
Tondela 1-1 Rio Ave 20/09/20
Rio Ave 2-1 Tondela 09/02/21
Rio Ave latest home form
Rio Ave have recently been on a relatively good form at home. They have won three of their last five matches. They won their last home games against Belenenses through penalties after a 1-1 draw in the Taca de Portugal. They lost 2-1 to Mafra in their last league game.
Rio Ave 1-2 Academico Viseu 31/10/21
Rio Ave 2-1 Olhanense 20/11/21
Rio Ave 1-0 Nacional 28/11/21
Rio Ave 1-2 Mafra 11/12/21
Rio Ave (P)1-1 Belenenses 23/12/21
Rio Ave latest away form
Rio Ave have been on a good form on the road, but have recently shown some poor performance by losing two successive games. However, they won their last away game, defeating Casa Pia 1-0. They have won two, drawn one and lost two of their last five matches on the road.
Penefiel 1-1 Rio Ave 23/10/21
Trofense 0-1 Rio Ave 06/11/21
Benfica II 2-0 Rio Ave 04/12/21
Porto 1-0 Rio Ave 16/12/21
Casa Pia 0-1 Rio Ave 19/12/21
Tondela latest home form
Tondela have recently failed to maintain consistency in their performance, as they have not managed to record successive wins at home. They won their last game at home 2-1 against Moreirense. In their last five matches, they have won three and lost two, scoring 8 goals and conceding 7.
Tondela 3-1 Leixoes 22/11/21
Tondela 0-1 Pacos Ferreira 18/12/21
Tondela 3-1 Estoril 21/12/21
Tondela 0-3 Gil Vicente 28/12/21
Tondela 2-1 Moreirense 03/01/22
Tondela latest away form
Tondela have recently been on a poor run of form on the road, as they have won just one of their last five away matches, and they have not won in any of their last four. They drew 1-1 with Boavista in their last, off the back three successive defeats in the league.
Camacha 1-2 Tondela 16/10/21
Arouca 2-0 Tondela 29/10/21
Sporting Lisbon 2-0 Tondela 28/11/21
Vitoria Guimaraes 5-2 Tondela 11/12/21
Boavista 1-1 Tondela 08/01/22
Rio Ave news
Freire could revert to his preferred 4-4-2 formation, with Renato Pantalon, Pedro Amaral, Costinha and Aderllan Santos shielding Jhonatan in goal.
Pedro Mendes and Ze Manuel should lead the attack in front of Gabrielzinho, who is currently the club’s top scorer in the second division with five goals this season.
Tondela are expected to have a full strength squad, as likes of Tiago Almeida, Eduardo Quaresma and Tiago Danta are available for selection.
Jota Goncalves would be the only concern on the injury front after sustaining a ruptured cruciate ligament back in September, while Joao Pedro will feature at the midfield.
Prediction and Odds
Tondela will look to redeem themselves from their disappointing league campaign by keeping their cup run going. However, Rio Ave will be fresh and ready to go after their two-week absence from action. And we see this contest ending in a draw or in favour of the hosts.
Odds: 1 2.35 X 3.05 2 2.60
Rio Ave 0-0 Tondela
Rio Ave 1-1 Tondela
Rio Ave 2-2 Tondela
Rio Ave 1-0 Tondela
Rio Ave 2-1 Tondela