Copa São Paulo: Santos ease through São Mateus test
Santos virtually assured themselves of qualification for the knockout stages of the Copa São Paulo with a 1-0 victory over São Mateus.
While the Peixe were not at their best in the encounter, they were comfortably the better side throughout and fully deserving of their win.
The Paulista giants took the lead midway through the first-half as São Mateus as Stefano Yuri pounced upon a loose ball in the area to turn and fire home.
There were glimpses of quality from the favourites, with midfielders Lucas Otávio and Leandrinho prominent. However. there remains a lack of cohesion in attack that will be a worry ahead of the latter stages.
The second-half offered very little to shout about, but there was opportunity for a bright cameo from forward Neilton, who offered more balance and pace to the Santos forward line.
Progress has been smooth for the club thus far, but there are plenty of areas to work on long-term.
Man of the Match: Leandrinho (Santos) - It would be easy to once more hand the award to his midfield partner Lucas Otávio, but Leandrinho was very impressive on Monday night. An assured display in his box-to-box midfield role, offering support to his defence, linking play and pushing on to assist in attacking areas. A fine performance.
Santos XI: Gabriel; Douglas, Gustavo Henrique, Jubal, Canavarros; Lucas Otávio, Pedro Castro, Leandrinho, Léo Cittadini; Giva, Stefano Yuri
São Mateus XI: Harisson; Cássio, Elizeu, João Vitor, Marquinhos; Rodrigo, George, Jean, Willian; Tassio, Ricardo.