Rosario Central vs Gimnasia La Plata
Competition: Copa Argentina
Date: 7 December 2018
Kick-off: 01:10 CET
Rosario Central’s coach, Edgardo Bauza, didn’t surprise anyone fielding a totally alternative lineup last weekend, when they visited Vélez Sarsfield. He didn’t want to risk any injuries (of his regulars), so he pretty much decided to… sacrifice last weekend’s Superliga match. They lost, as expected and predicted here as well, without scoring (2-0). Central reached the Copa Argentina final three seasons in a row, between 2014 and 2016, but they lost all three(!), to Huracán (on penalties), Boca Juniors, and River Plate. To reach the final this time, they needed to eliminate five opponents; leaving aside minnows Juventud Antoniana, the only team they beat in 90 minutes were Newell’s Old Boys (2-1, in Sarandí). They needed penalties to beat Talleres Córdoba, Almagro, and Temperley. Before losing to Vélez last weekend, they had managed – finally – to return to winning ways in the Superliga, beating both Estudiantes and San Martín San Juan at home, in a matter of four days.
Just like Rosario Central, Gimnasia La Plata played with reserves last weekend at River Plate, with youngsters, with some guys playing out of position, all because Pedro Troglio didn’t want to take any risks, see a key-player get injured, just a few days before this… mega match. Gimnasia have never reached the final before. Someone could claim that… they deserve to win it more than Central, because they eliminated both Boca Juniors and River Plate, but… obviously, titles don’t get decided like that, on “who deserves them the most”, based on how each team reached a final. They lost 3-1 at River last weekend, their fourth defeat in a row in the Superliga. Last week they beat River on penalties, in the semifinal, after drawing 2-2 in 90 minutes. They hadn’t scored in three matches, but they scored twice past River, the team with the best defense in the Superliga…
Previous five matches:
Velez Sarsfield vs Rosario Central 2-0
Rosario Central vs San Martin San Juan 1-0
Rosario Central vs Estudiantes 2-1
Temperley vs Rosario Central 1-1
Atletico Tucuman vs Rosario Central 2-1
River Plate vs Gimnasia La Plata 3-1
River Plate vs Gimnasia La Plata 2-2
Gimnasia La Plata vs San Martin San Juan 0-2
Gimnasia La Plata vs Racing Club 0-3
Belgrano vs Gimnasia La Plata 2-0
Central’s next official game is late January. Gimnasia are hosting Huracán on Sunday (Superliga).
Rosario Central vs Gimnasia La Plata: Head to head Stats
Five wins for Central, four for Gimnasia, and a draw, in the last 10 matches between these two, both in Rosario and La Plata.
Rosario Central vs Gimnasia La Plata: Prediction
The game is held in neutral Mendoza. The winner earns a spot in next season’s Copa Libertadores group stage. Central are considered favorites to win, but I wouldn’t bet on that.
Rosario Central vs Gimnasia La Plata: Betting Tips
Draw is my top choice, not expecting the title to be decided without penalties. It pays 2.90, and 3.25 if combined with “under 2.5 goals”.