Independiente vs Corinthians
Competition: Copa Libertadores
Date: 19 April 2018
Kick-off: 02:45 CET
Independiente are in the middle of a major transformation. The team that lost back-to-back games to Atlético Tucumán and San Lorenzo (both at home), went on to beat former second-placed Talleres Córdoba away from home(!), and, just last weekend, leaders Boca Juniors, spicing up the last few game weeks of Argentina’s Superliga. The Avellaneda side are fourth in the table, with four matches left. Their eight-point gap to Boca is super difficult to get covered, but Godoy Cruz are just four points behind Boca, so the title race is wide open. Independiente are on three points from two group matches, having lost at Deportivo Lara, and beaten Millonarios at home. Against the latter, they were much better, and deserved more than one goal. Even that “poor” 1-0 though was enough to give them all three points.
Corinthians players told reporters right before flying to Buenos Aires that they were traveling to Argentina to beat Independiente, but one thing is for sure, a draw in this match won’t be a bad result for them. They are on four points from two matches, after that 2-0 victory over Deportivo Lara in their previous game. Last weekend they beat Fluminense 2-1 at home, on their Brazil Série A debut, a competition they won last season. Central defender Henrique fell badly a few minutes before the end of the match, hit his head, was pretty bad after the game (he said he couldn’t even walk), but his situation improved spectacularly the next 48 hours, and is expected to play in Avellaneda. Striker Jadson missed the game against Flu, but also flew to Buenos Aires, even though his presence in the first 11 is doubtful. He missed several Paulista championship games, returned just for the final against Palmeiras, but coach Fábio Carille preferred to protect him last weekend. According to reports, Corinthians will start with Cássio, Fagner, Balbuena, Henrique, Sidcley, Ralf, Maycon, Clayson, Mateus Vital, Rodriguinho and Romero (or Jadson).
Previous five matches:
Independiente vs Boca Juniors 1-0
Talleres Cordoba vs Independiente 0-2
Independiente vs San Lorenzo 0-1
Independiente vs Atletico Tucuman 0-2
Tigre vs Independiente 1-1
Corinthians vs Fluminense 2-1
Palmeiras vs Corinthians 0-1
Corinthians vs Palmeiras 0-1
Corinthians vs Sao Paulo 1-0
Sao Paulo vs Corinthians 1-0
Independiente’s next game is on Monday, again at home, versus Defensa y Justicia (Argentina Superliga). Corinthians are visiting Paraná on Sunday (Brazil Série A).
Independiente vs Corinthians: Head to head Stats
Independiente have hosted Corinthians twice before, in 1999 and 2001. Both were Copa Mercosur group stage matches, and the Argentines won both times, 2-0 and 1-0.
Independiente vs Corinthians: Prediction
I’m backing the visitors to earn at least a draw.
Independiente vs Corinthians: Betting Tips
Corinthians’ double chance is at 1.78(!), super high for a double chance of the reigning Brazil champions, reigning Paulista champions as well, not to mention Copa Libertadores group leaders. I would stay with that, considering it good enough to avoid risking with something else. Their win in “draw no bet” pays 2.70(!).
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