Gremio vs Cruzeiro
Competition: Brazil Serie A
Date: 23 August 2018
Kick-off: 02:45 CET
Hate to admit it, but I find it impossible to make any sense of this Gremio. First game after the World Cup finals, convincing 2-0 win over Atlético Mineiro. Right after that, surprising defeat at Vasco da Gama. Right after that, big win over Sao Paulo, coming from behind. Next, poor performance at Chapecoense. Making a long story short, Gremio have played 10 games after the World Cup, and they haven’t managed to play two good games in a row. It’s true that Renato Portaluppi has rotated the squad heavily on many occasions, they play practically with two different lineups per week, but still, from Gremio, you have to expect better. Last weekend, they beat Corinthians in Sao Paulo. Right before that, they had looked very poor at Maracana against Flamengo, getting eliminated from the Copa do Brasil. Right now, I wouldn’t bet on them, neither on nor against. They are fourth in the table, on 36 points, five behind leaders Sao Paulo.
If Gremio look… problematic and unreliable, Cruzeiro take the same adjectives to whole different levels. A week ago, they almost “managed” to get eliminated by Santos from the Copa to Brasil, getting saved by their goalkeeper in the penalty shootout. Last weekend, they had the chance to bounce back, hosting Bahia. A 1-1 draw was all they managed. They are 8th in the table, 15 whole points behind leaders Sao Paulo. Having written all that, they are in the Copa do Brasil semifinals, and after their 0-2 at Maracana over Flamengo, they are super close to qualifying for the Copa Libertadores quarterfinals as well. Uruguayan attacking midfielder Giorgian de Arrascaeta is back from suspension, good news for Mano Menezes.
Previous five matches:
Corinthians vs Gremio 0-1
Flamengo vs Gremio 1-0
Gremio vs Vitoria 4-0
Estudiantes vs Gremio 2-1
Gremio vs Flamengo 2-0
Cruzeiro vs Bahia 1-1
Cruzeiro vs Santos 1-2
Flamengo vs Cruzeiro 1-0
Flamengo vs Cruzeiro 0-2
Vitoria vs Cruzeiro 1-1
Gremio’s next game is at Atlético Paranaense, on Saturday. Same day, Cruzeiro will be hosting Fluminense (both Série A matches).
Gremio vs Cruzeiro: Head to head Stats
Three wins for Gremio, one for Cruzeiro, and a draw, in the last five games between these two in Porto Alegre.
Gremio vs Cruzeiro: Prediction
I feel this is the trickiest Série A game this midweek. “Under 2.5 goals” is the only tip I feel comfortable giving, but it’s not paying more than 1.50.
Gremio vs Cruzeiro: Betting Tips
If 1.50 is good enough for you, go for “under 2.5 goals”. Gremio have conceded just eight goals in 19 matches thus far in the championship, and Cruzeiro concede less than a goal per game themselves. Gremio are considered favorites to win, but… despite their great record at home these last weeks (four wins and a draw), I still find it very difficult to back them to win, mostly because they haven’t played two good games in a row since before the World Cup finals in Russia, and they played well last weekend. They make so little sense these last weeks, that I will be anything but surprised if they lose 0-1, despite their awesome record at home. Between their win at 1.83, and Cruzeiro’s double chance at 2.00, I would take the latter.