Gil Vicente and Boavista get their 2021-22 Primeira Liga campaign underway with a fixture at Estadio Cidade de Barcelos on Monday night.
Both teams were satisfied with avoiding relegation last season, eventually finishing in 11th and 13th place respectively.
While two decades have now passed since Boavista’s glory years at the turn of the Millennium, they did not necessarily expect to be scraping to remain in the top flight throughout last season.
Boavista prevailed in just eight of their 34 league contests, but closing the campaign with victories over Portimonense and Monday’s opponents ultimately kept them among Portuguese football’s elite.
With last season’s star man Angel Gomes now back at parent club Lille, the chances are that Os Axadrezados will be delighted if they stay out of trouble and claim a mid-table spot.
Nevertheless, new boss Joao Pedro Sousa will have higher expectations, particularly with his team having won each of their Taca de Liga fixtures in recent weeks.
Successive shutouts were recorded against Maritimo and Portimonense with 17-year-old Tiago Morais stealing the headlines with a double in the latter game.
Performance-wise, Gil Vicente can have no complaints in the same competition having defeated Tondela and claimed a draw with Pacos de Ferreira during normal time.
However, the penalty-shootout defeat at Estadio da Mata Real has left the club out of the tournament, leaving Ricardo Soares with work to do to lift his squad.
On a positive note, they have found stability in the top flight over the past two seasons, giving them the platform to push for the top six this time around.
New arrival Bilel Aouacheria has started well in his bid to revive his career by netting in the meeting with Pacos de Ferreira.
Gil Vicente (all competitions) form:
Boavista (all competitions) form: