Atletico Mineiro vs Gremio
Competition: Brazil Serie A
Date: 3 December 2017
Kick-off: 20:00 CET
A week after scoring… the goal of the season, Otero scored yet another impressive goal last weekend when Atletico Mineiro visited champions Corinthians, a direct free-kick, but even that, would have been eclipsed by what he almost, almost did in the second half. There was a period of less than ten minutes that Atletico were 2-1 down (Corinthians had taken the lead in the 58th minute), period during which the… Venezuelan first had a great free-kick saved, and then set up Fred with a corner-kick to make it 2-2. In between those two, he had tried the… “colpo grosso” of the season, attempting to score with a corner-kick. It has happened before, there are players who have scored like that, but personally I don’t remember anyone doing it the way Otero tried to do it. He didn’t curve the ball with the inner part of his foot/shoe, but with the central/outer part, giving the ball an incredible orbit that almost fooled Corinthians’ experienced goalkeeper. He saved it, depriving everyone (but Corinthians fans, obviously), the joy of watching a goal probably as impressive as the one Otero had scored a week earlier. With that point they earned last weekend, Atletico are 10th in the table, with good chances of finishing in the top-eight or top-nine, so as to play Copa Libertadores football next season. A win over Gremio, should do the trick.
How fitting… Four years ago, Atletico Mineiro won the Copa Libertadores. A few days ago, Gremio brought the trophy back to Brazil, hence the “fitting” word, as the two latest Brazilian Libertadores winners are facing each other, right after Gremio’s historic triumph at Lanus. They had won 1-0 at home, a week earlier, and last Wednesday they convinced the last ones who deserved the trophy more than anyone else this season, beating the Argentinian team again, 2-1, in Lanus. It was the third time in Gremio’s history that they lifted the trophy, which puts them one higher than city rivals Internacional (who will be back to the Serie A next season, after spending 2017 in the Serie B, for the first time in their history). Last weekend, Gremio drew 1-1 at home to Atletico Goianiense, playing with reserves. They are 3rd in the table, would like to finish 2nd, but… it’s still party time at Gremio, and the party, actually, is not over yet. Right after this match, the players are packing their things for the United Arab Emirates, for the FIFA Club World Cup.
Previous five matches:
Corinthians vs Atletico Mineiro 2-2
Atletico Mineiro vs Coritiba 3-0
Vasco da Gama vs Atletico Mineiro 1-1
Bahia vs Atletico Mineiro 2-2
Atletico Mineiro vs Atletico GO 3-2
Lanus vs Gremio 1-2
Gremio vs Atletico GO 1-1
Gremio vs Lanus 1-0
Santos vs Gremio 1-0
Gremio vs Sao Paulo 1-0
Atletico’s next scheduled game is on January 11, a friendly one against Glasgow Rangers (Florida Cup). Gremio are soon flying to the United Arab Emirates, to take part in the FIFA Club World Cup.
Atletico Mineiro vs Gremio: Head to head Stats
Gremio have three consecutive wins at Atletico Mineiro. Before that, they had drawn, while Atletico’s last home win over Gremio was back in 2013. Their last two games in Belo Horizonte went over 2.5 goals.
Atletico Mineiro vs Gremio: Prediction
Under the circumstances (Gremio just played a Libertadores final, and mentally they are somewhere between that triumph and the challenge of winning the FIFA Club World Cup later in December), I feel I have to back Atletico to win the game, also because they have a much bigger motive, and they do come from back-to-back great games.
Atletico Mineiro vs Gremio: Betting Tips
Wow… Atletico’s win pays just 1.28… To hope for 2.00, I would combine their win with “over 2.5 goals”.
More Brazil Serie A betting tips and match previews: