NICK LEYDEN - Monday, November 19, 2012
While playing time has been scarce this season, Tony Taylor took advantage of a midweek scrimmage to try to force his way with a hat trick against Benfica "B".
Newly promoted Estoril sit in sixth place after nine league games largely thanks to an impressive offense that has produced 15 goals. In fact, only the league's top three teams, Porto, Benfica and Braga, have eclipsed Estoril's scoring mark.
Opportunities for Taylor to play have been limited because of a crowded front line. Luis Leal leads the team with five goals, and last season's leading scorer Licá has notched a pair of his own. Likewise, Guinea-Bissau international Gerso and veteran João Paulo have also received significant playing time up top.
With the next competitive game not coming until 11/25 the Canaries scheduled two practice games for this week. After losing 2-1 to lower league Mafra in the first exhibition, Estoril took on Benfica "B" who are in fifth place in Portugal's second division.
Estoril thumped the opposition 5-0 behind closed doors, thanks to three goals from Taylor and one apiece from Carlitos and Licá. Taylor will hope such performances lead to increased playing time when league games resume next week against Nacional.