Pereira rejects Hulk exit following Sporting stalemate

PORTO coach Vítor Pereira refuted suggestions that he is set to lose centre-forward, Hulk during the January transfer window, following his side’s goalless draw with Sporting.

Pereira watched his side extend their unbeaten league run to 53 games in Saturday night’s stalemate before ruling out Hulk’s departure.

“He’s a key player and is here and will continue here – I’m not worried. I believe that there are many clubs that want to [sign him] but one thing is wanting, another is power,” Pereira affirmed, with Chelsea thought to head the list of admirers for the Brazilian international.

The draw leaves Porto with a one point lead at the top of the Liga Sagres – after both sides’ spurned opportunities to break the deadlock at the José Alvalade.

Nicolas Otamendi headed wide for Porto midway through the first-half before Helton saved well to deny Sporting’s Anderson Polga shortly after. The home side again went close when Marat Izmailov’s shot was blocked by Álvaro Pereira late on and a last-ditch attempt from Porto saw James Rodríguez’s effort blocked by his own teammate in stoppage time.

Benfica, second, can overtake Porto with a win at União Leiria on Sunday evening.

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