Sport Recife vs Junior
Competition: Copa Sudamericana
Date: 27 October 2017
Kick-off: 01:45 CET
Curitiba lies… half a continent away from Recife, but even so far away from home, Sport’s players didn’t avoid being told off by fans of theirs once they returned to their Curitiba hotel, having just lost 2-1 to Atletico Paranaense, last weekend. It was just two fans (Rithely, one of Sport’s players, actually talked to them, trying to calm them down), and it didn’t turn ugly, but the incident was enough to send a dozen police officers to Recife’s airport, and be there when the team returned to their base. Again, there were fans at the airport, but just a few, and in the mood only to ask for autographs and take some photos, other than tell their players “give your all against Junior”. Sport are sitting 15th in the table in the Serie A, just two points ahead of Vitoria, the first team right below the relegation line. Vanderlei Luxemburgo told reporters in Curitiba that he would have to talk to the board of directors about the Copa Sudamericana matches, and only after talking to them, he confirmed that Sport are going to play with their best possible lineup against Junior. There was a doubt, because they are hosting Coritiba on Sunday, a match they absolutely M U S T win, but Sport’s coach was clear, only injured players will stay out, and other than that, the best available players will be included in the starting lineup. Incredibly, Sport have won just two of their last 15(!!) matches in all competitions, and one of those was over Ponte Preta, 3-1, at home, in the previous round of the Sudamericana.
In Europe (and the rest of the world) we use(d) to talk and write about Real Madrid’s “BBC” and Barcelona’s “MSN” (until Neymar ditched them to move to Paris), but in Barranquilla they have their own… letter-game, “ChaTeo”, combining the names of Junior’s two brightest stars, Yimmi Chará and Teófilo Gutiérrez. Both are included in the squad that traveled to Brazil, and there is little doubt both will start, as Junior are after scoring at least once. Generally, Junior have traveled to Recife with a full squad. Their defeat at home to Santa Fe last weekend couldn’t have come at a worse time. They were undefeated in 13 home matches before falling to the Bogota side, they had even avoided conceding for 826 minutes, when Anderson Plata scored for Santa Fe (early in the second half), which proved to be the only goal of the match. They are sitting third in the table of Colombia’s championship, three points behind co-leaders Santa Fe (which makes their Sunday defeat even harder to swallow) and Atletico Nacional (the latter have already played a game more than Santa Fe and Junior).
Previous 5 matches:
Atletico PR vs Sport Recife 2-1
Sport Recife vs Santos 1-1
Sport Recife vs Atletico Mineiro 1-1
Vitoria vs Sport Recife 1-2
Sao Paulo vs Sport Recife 1-0
Junior vs Santa Fe 0-1
Independiente Medellin vs Junior 1-1
Independiente Medellin vs Junior 1-2
Junior vs Patriotas Boyaca 1-0
Patriotas Boyaca vs Junior 1-1
Sport’s next game is on Sunday, again at home, versus Coritiba (Brazil Serie A). Same day, Junior will be visiting Atletico Bucaramanga (Colombia championship).
Sport Recife vs Junior: Head to head Stats
Sport Recife have never played against a team from Colombia before.
Sport Recife vs Junior: Prediction
Despite the fact that Sport (coach and board of directors) have decided to play with a full squad, not resting any players ahead of their crucial Serie A game against Coritiba, I don’t trust them to beat Junior.
Sport Recife vs Junior: Betting Tips
Junior’s double chance pays 1.95. Their win in “draw no bet” is at 3.00 betting odds.