Santos v Corinthians
The Estádio Urbano Caldeira will play host to an exciting inner state battle between two sides fighting for a place in continental football next season. The result here could have huge implications on whether either side achieves their goals or not.
After an impressive 4-1 victory at home to Juventude, Santos had the trip to fellow state rivals Bragantino and enjoyed an remarkable 2-0 victory. Camacho opened the scoring for Peixe before a first Brasileirão goal for 17-year-old, Angelo, sealed the points for Santos. In spite of the win, Santos were beaten on expected goals for the first time in two matches with 1.61 compared to 1.19. They’ll be hoping to tighten up defensively in this one. Santos currently sit 11th in the league and have picked up nine points from their previous five matches, which leaves them 7th in the current form table over the previous five matches, which will give them confidence coming into this battle. Santos have two players who will definitely miss out in Yeferson Soteldo (Injury) and Eduardo Bauermann (Suspension).
In midweek, after a tight 0-0 draw in the first leg, Corinthians suffered penalty shootout heartbreak against Flamengo in the Copa do Brasil final, ending their dreams of silverware this season. Their focus now turns to earning a place in next season Copa Libertadores. Their league match with Goias last week was postponed due to a local government authority ruling. Their last league outing was on September 9th where they saw off Athletico Paranaense in a 2-1 home victory, after racing into a two-goal lead. Timão currently sit in fifth place. For this duel, they will be without Paulinho who will not play again until 2023.
The last eight times Santos have hosted Corinthians, there have been under 2.5 goals scored, this is something which is on the cards here as both sides look to cancel each other out.
Palmeiras v Avai
The match at Allianz Parque this Saturday will have implications at both the top and bottom of the Brasileirão. Palmeiras currently lead the way in Brazil by eight points, whilst Avai sit second from bottom and are scrapping to remain in the division.
After five wins in a row, Palmeiras are now two matches without a victory and have seen their lead at the top of the table slip to eight points. Despite this, Verdão are still clear favourites for the league title, and it would take an almighty collapse for them not to be crowned league champions for an 11th time. Last time out, Abel Ferreira men took on state rivals Sao Paulo in the Choque-Rei at home. Sao Paulo were reduced to ten men early In the first half when Venezuelan Nahuel Ferreresi was sent off, the away side would finish the match with nine men after another red card, this time for Lucas Beraldo. Despite this Verdão were left frustrated in a 0-0 draw. With Internacional eager to capitalize on any slip ups, Palmeiras will be hoping to pick up the three points in this game, to avoid putting any unnecessary pressure on themselves. Top scorer, Rony, was banned last time out and can return here, which will be a welcome boost for Palmeiras.
Avai really need to start improving their results and performances if they want to remain in Brazil’s top tier. They have lost their last five matches in a row and sit 19th in the league, six points from safety. On Saturday, Avai took on Fluminense at home and were simply outclassed in a 3-0 defeat. They had 15 shots, but only managed two on target. Their XG was at 1.31 compared to Flu’s 2.79. This was the third match in a row that Leão da Ilha have underperformed on the expected goal department. It’s safe to say, theirs plenty of room for improvement needed for the Florianópolis side.
After their recent shortcomings, a home tie against a struggling Avai side is the perfect opportunity for Palmeiras to return to winnings ways. They come into this game as heavy favourites and should have enough in their arsenal to pick up the points here.
Juventude v Sao Paulo
Juventude sit bottom of the Brazilian Serie A table and are 13 points adrift of the top tier. It’s almost a certainty that they will be playing second tier football next season, but they will want to go out on a high. Chapecoense, struggled last season in Serie A and were relegated, they now find themselves in a relegation battle in the second tier, this is something Juve will be eager to avoid. Juve are without a win in their last 13 attempt, something they will be eager to change.
Last time out, Juventude played host to Atletico Goianiense. Wellington Rato opened the scoring for the away side, before Juve’s Oscar Ruiz drew the sides level. For the second time in three matches, the Rio Grande do sol outperformed their opponents on XG with a 1.59 compared to 0.49. This has been a issue throughout the season as they have an expected goals of 35.77 for the season, but have only found the net on 25 occasions.
After two winless games, Sao Paulo returned to winning ways in a style on Thursday evening as they saw of Coritiba in an impressive 3-1 victory. Tricolor put up an XG of 3.22 compared to Coxa’s 1.13, showing that Rogério Ceni’s men were well worth the three points. Prior to their victory over Coritiba, Sao Paulo took on Palmeiras at the weekend and showed resilient display to earn a point, despite lacking discipline in a 0-0 draw, which saw two of their players sent off. Their win on Thursday moves them up to tenth place and they’ll be hoping for a similar display as they continue their pursuit of a Copa Libertadores place.
Juventude have seen over 1.5 goals scored in their last ten matches, whilst this has been the case in six of the last eight matches involving Sao Paulo. With that in mind, expect goals in this one.
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