NICK LEYDEN - Sunday, May 12, 2013
Tony Taylor was a late substitute as Estoril defeated Beira Mar and moved to within a single point of clinching a spot in next year's Europa League.
Estoril 2-1 Beira Mar
The visitors opened the scoring in the 31st minute with an olimpico when Dani Abalo's corner kick sailed directly into the far side netting.
Estoril struck back quickly though as Lica expertly curled a shot past Rui Rego in the 34th minute.
In the 68th minute Beira Mar midfielder Nildo picked up a debatable yellow card, his second, which resulted in his expulsion.
In an attempt to capitalize on their good fortune Estoril began pushing farther forward, and in the 78th minute Marco Silva made an attacking substitution by replacing defender Anderson Luis with Taylor.
With just minutes remaining in the game Estoril benefitted from another controversial refereeing decision which handed them all three points.
Lica looped the ball towards the goal in the 87th minute and Rui Rego subsequently fumbled the seemingly harmless cross into his own net after having been bumped by the host's towering centerback Steven Vitoria.
Beira Mar protested vociferously, asking for a foul to be called on Vitoria, but the referee pointed to midfield and awarded the goal.
With the win Estoril remain in fifth place, two points ahead of their only Europa League challenger Vitoria de Guimaraes. A single point in their final game, on the road at Gil Vicente on 5/19, will guarantee their first ever European qualification.