Ponte Preta vs Sol de America
Competition: Copa Sudamericana
Date: 30 June 2017
Kick-off: 00:15 CET
Ponte Preta are playing their third home game in a week. Against Cruzeiro, Lucca’s goal from the penalty spot proved enough to give them a big win. Versus Palmeiras last weekend, Lucca scored again, he made it 1-1 just before halftime, but Palmeiras responded right away, and the 2-1 in favor of the hosts didn’t change until the end of the game. What’s ironic is that Ponte Preta’s most important absence in this match is exactly Lucca’s. The 27-year-old has already seven goals to his name in 10 Brasileirao matches this season, but he got sent off in the first game against Gimnasia La Plata in the previous round of the Copa Sudamericana, obviously missed the return leg, but remains suspended. Fernandinho, Claudinho, Sheik, Rodrigo, Luan Peres and Negueba are the six names that were added on Tuesday in the revised list that Ponte Preta sent to Conmebol for the remainder of the competition this season (all teams were allowed to make up to six changes). Ponte Preta eliminated Gimnasia without beating them, they drew 0-0 in Brazil, and 1-1 in Argentina, grabbing the ticket to the last 32 thanks to the away goal.
Sol de America played their last game of this season’s Apertura in Paraguay last weekend, they drew 1-1 to Sportivo Luqueno, it was their fifth draw in their last six matches, they lost the remaining game, so… no wonder they ‘collapsed’ and finished fifth, a position that one even their most pessimistic fan could have guessed before this incredible streak of mediocre to bad results started. The team flew to Brazil with their four newly-arrived players, Nicolás Martínez, Aldo Vera, Pedro Arce and 26-year-old defender Nicolás Arrechea, ex-Almagro, who only signed for the Asuncion club on Monday. Midfielder Víctor Velázquez, whose contract expires soon and most probably will return to Cerro, traveled as well with the group. Sol de America eliminated Estudiantes Caracas in the previous round, beating them 3-2 in Venezuela, and 7-1(!) in Paraguay.
Ponte Preta vs Sol de America: Head-to-head Stats
Ponte Preta have never faced a team from Paraguay, and Sol de America have never played against a Brazilian side.
Ponte Preta vs Sol de America: Prediction
Despite their loss to Palmeiras, Ponte Preta are a team that I feel can be trusted at home, where they had won the four games just before losing last weekend. Plus, Sol de America finished the Apertura season in Paraguay in very poor form. Everything ‘screams’ that Ponte Preta should win this one.
Ponte Preta vs Sol de America: Tips
Ponte Preta’s win pays 1.66. For more than that, I’m backing them to win and keep a clean sheet, a combination that pays 2.40.