Brazilians Atletico Paranaense visit Colombians Millonarios on Wednesday night in the preliminary qualification rounds of the Copa Libertadores, South America’s premier continental competition.
The Brazilians hold a narrow lead following last weeks’ first leg. They edged a close game 1-0. Millonarios were well in the game but couldn’t find an all important away goal, making tonight’s game a dangerous one for them in terms of the importance of a clean sheet.
Millonarios are also no strangers to the competition having made the semi finals on three occasions. That being said, this is their first appearance since the 2013 edition of the competition, in which they came bottom of their group with a measly 3 points. Los Millos return this year courtesy of their consistent performance over the 2016 season, which saw them finish 4th in the aggregate table with a record of 23-7-14.
Atletico are returning to the Libertadores following a 2 year absence. On that occasion they were narrowly eliminated in the group stage, despite winning 3 of their 6 games. In 2005 the Curitiba outfit made it all the way to the final but were hammered 5-1 over two legs by compatriots Sao Paulo. A strong showing last season has earned qualification, they finished 6th, with a record of 17-6-15. However, they can’t be coming into tonight’s clash with much confidence, considering that 14 of those 15 defeats came on the road.
Millonarios were in league action over the weekend, but didn’t get the result they wanted, going down 2-1 at home to Independiente Medellin. They were probably unfortunate to lose the match, despite making a few changes. Tonight they will play the strongest team possible with Juan Guillermo Domínguez and David Silva the only absentees. They could line up as follow:
Vikonis; Palacios, Franco, Cadavid, Machado; Duque, Henao, Rojas, Quinones; Nunez, Del Valle
Atletico were also in action over the weekend, A mainly reserve team drew 2-2 at home to PSTC in a State League match. Their eyes were firmly on tonight’s game, with the State League of little importance to them in comparison with the Copa. We expect them to take to the field with the following as starters tonight:
Weverton; Jonathan, Paulo Andre,, Thiago Heleno, Sidcley; Nikao, Otavio, Carlos Alberto, Felipe Gedoz; Pablo, Grafite
Millonarios will feel confident in their ability to progress against a side with such a wretched recorded on the road. However, they will be in big trouble if Paranaense do get on the score sheet as the away goal rule applies. The home win is priced at a relatively small 1.5 and we don’t see all that much value there. We like the look of corners over the 90 minutes here. The tie should never really be dead, even if the hosts are two goals up with 10 minutes left an Atletico goal will eliminate them. There should always be one side desperately pressing for a goal throughout the game, as well as another sitting deep in their own half. We feel this will lead to a large amount of corners. Last weeks game had 11 and we could see a similar amount tonight.
Tip: Corners- Over 9 at odds of 2.00 with bet365.
Be sure to follow us on twitter- @samericantips.