Independiente vs River Plate
Competition: Copa Libertadores
Date: 20 September 2018
Kick-off: 00:30 CET
Before facing big rivals, coaches and players, especially in Europe, tend to… label their opponents “favorites” to win/qualify, or at least say they consider the two teams’ chances even. Not Maxi Meza. Independiente’s attacking midfielder said in a Press conference that he considers his own team favorites to qualify over River Plate, being quick though to add that he doesn’t mean any disrespect to their Buenos Aires neighbors. The Avellaneda side beat Colón 3-0 on Saturday, bouncing back from consecutive poor results, at least in their domestic competitions. They had just gotten eliminated by minnows Brown de Adrogué(!) in the Copa Argentina, and had earned just two points from three matches in the Superliga. Should be mentioned though that Colón were left with 10 men right before the end of the first half, with the score at 1-0, and Independiente’s other two goals came after the 86th minute.
River Plate’s coach, Marcelo Gallardo, told reporters that he enjoys facing against teams that try to… play football, to attack, to score, considering Independiente one of those teams. Just like their Avellaneda rivals, River picked up their first Superliga victory this season just last weekend, beating San Martín San Juan 4-1 at home. Their first goal shouldn’t have counted, the ball had gone out before Rodrigo Mora sent it in, but all in all River were much-much better, and deserved all three points. They are on seven from five matches, and are about to face Boca Juniors at La Bombonera, but, obviously, that game can wait, no matter if it’s THE derby in Buenos Aires, in Argentina, and one of the hottest on the whole planet, actually.
Previous five matches:
Independiente vs Colon 3-0
Independiente vs Brown de Adrogué 1-1
Estudiantes vs Independiente 2-2
Santos vs Independiente 0-0
Independiente vs Defensa y Justicia 0-1
River Plate vs San Martin San Juan 4-1
River Plate vs Platense 2-0
San Lorenzo vs River Plate 1-1
River Plate vs Racing Club 3-0
River Plate vs Argentinos Juniors 0-0
Independiente’s next game is at Banfield, on Saturday. River are visiting Boca on Sunday (both Argentina Superliga matches).
Independiente vs River Plate: Head to head Stats
Independiente have three wins in a row at home over River, without even conceding. Before that, there was at draw in Avellaneda between these two, and a River victory in 2011, their last one there.
Independiente vs River Plate: Prediction
River are considered slight favorites to win the game. Personally, I expect Independiente to earn at least a draw, and deep down I see them win by one goal.
Independiente vs River Plate: Betting Tips
The hosts’ win in “draw no bet” is at 1.83, and their double chance down at 1.48. Independiente’s win by one goal is at 4.00, a risk I consider worth taking.