Barcelona vs Santos
Competition: Copa Libertadores
Date: 14 September 2017
Kick-off: 02:45 CET
After earning some big results in the group stage (win over Atletico Nacional, triumphs at Estudiantes and Botafogo), Barcelona proved in the round of 16 that they are a force to be reckoned with this season, beating Palmeiras 1-0 at home, and qualifying for the quarterfinals on penalties, after losing the return leg in Sao Paulo by the same score. This season’s Palmeiras are not the dominant power in Brazil they were last season, when they won the championship, but still, eliminating the Brazil champions is a major deal for Barcelona, and they have every reason to feel that since they did it against Palmeiras, they definitely can do it against Santos as well. In Ecuador’s championship they have just nine points in eight matches(!), they have three consecutive draws, the last one last weekend at Independiente del Valle, a 2-2, in which they where 2-0 down in the 60th minute, but still managed to salvage a point.
There is good news and bad news for Santos. Good news, more like… great news, is that they beat Corinthians last weekend, 2-0, and despite being nine points behind them in the table, they have kind of… resurrected their hopes to challenge, at least challenge for the Brasileirao title until the end of the season. Bad news is that center-back Gustavo Henrique, left winger Jonathan Copete, center-forward Nilmar and attacking midfielder Emiliano Vecchio all stayed back in Brazil, all injured and unable to play any role in this huge game. Vastly experienced striker Ricardo Oliveira, scorer of the second goal against Corinthians, told reporters in Guayaquil after Santos’ arrival there that they have “studied” very well how Barcelona play, and they should look ready to take advantage of their weaknesses.
Previous 5 matches:
Independiente del Valle vs Barcelona 2-2
LDU Quito vs Barcelona 0-0
Barcelona vs Guayaquil City 0-0
Clan Juvenil vs Barcelona 0-2
Palmeiras vs Barcelona 1-0
Santos vs Corinthians 2-0
Cruzeiro vs Santos 1-1
Coritiba vs Santos 0-0
Santos vs Fluminense 0-0
Santos vs Atletico PR 1-0
Barcelona’s next game is on Sunday, at Emelec, the classic derby of Guayaquil. A day earlier, Santos will be visiting Botafogo.
Barcelona vs Santos: Head to head Stats
Barcelona have hosted Santos once before, in 2004, a game they lost 3-1.
Barcelona vs Santos: Prediction
Santos are still to lose this season in the Copa Libertadores, they have five wins and three draws (including the two wins over Atletico Paranaense in the round of 16), and I really doubt they will lose this match.
Barcelona vs Santos: Betting Tips
Santos’ double chance is at 1.55 betting odds, obviously not high enough. Deep down I expect a draw, at 3.10, which pays even better if you combine it with under 2.5 total goals.
More Copa Libertadores betting tips and match previews: