12 de Octubre vs Cerro Porteño
12 de Octubre and Cerro Porteño will meet on netural ground, Paraguay’s national stadium the Defensores del Chaco as the lowest scoring side take on the strongest defence in the division.
The tejedores are on a terrible run of form with just one win in their last 13, but they are often stubborn and hard to beat having drawn more games (8) than any other side in the league to date. New manager Robert Pereira debuted with a 0-0 draw in midweek and comes into this match with an upper hand over his rival on the bench Chiqui Arce. When they last met in April, Pereira was in charge of Tacuary and they surprised Cerro with a 2-0 victory that also took place in the Defensores del Chaco.
Cerro Porteño have been hanging onto Libertad’s coat tails often grinding out results, in fact their 1-0 victory on Tuesday night to Resistencia was the fourth time they’ve won by that scoreline in all competitions. Ten of their last 11 league wins have been to nil. Much of the stability comes from defensive pairing Alexis Duarte and Juan Patiño and the former has been linked to a move abroad but for now remains on the books of the defending champions. At the other end goals have been on rotation with eight players providing the last ten annotations on the scoresheet as Cerro keep finding a way to win.
Sportivo Ameliano v Nacional
Bottom of the table Sportivo Ameliano take on a Nacional who recorded their biggest win of the season in their last match against Tacuary. The game will be played on what is technically a neutral venue, the Martin Torres stadium in Asunción, but it has been Ameliano’s temporary home this year with their ground unable to host Primera games.
Ameliano continue to struggle in their first season in Primera, they have lost three games in a row for the third time this year. Previously they snapped both triple losing runs with a win, and both times it was at the Martin Torres. Scoring hasn’t been so much of an issue, they have managed to find the net in four of their last five games which includes matches against big guns Olimpia and Libertad. But the problem is at the other end with Humberto Garcia’s side leaking goals, not only have they only kept three clean sheets they have conceded 33 goals in their 18 games, more than any other side.
Nacional, like Ameliano, have had one of the highest goals per game averages in matches they’ve been involved in. Pedro Sarabia’s side have a 2.78 goals per game average in 2022 with only Resistencia (2.83), Libertad (2.94) and Saturday’s opponents Ameliano (2.89) managing more excitement. Much of the firepower has come from Facundo Bruera who hit the net again in his last game to make it 10 goals this season, the 23-year-old Argentine forward is physical and hard to handle in and around the box.
Olimpia v Resistencia
Olimpia returned from the international break with a resounding 4-1 win over Sportivo Ameliano despite not fielding three of their more important players in Derlis González, Luis Zárate and Richard Ortiz. The trio have returned from their trip to the Far East with the National Team and are set to play against Resistencia. For González, it would only be a fifth league start having been used mostly off the bench given his starting role in the Copa Libertadores games.
Coach Julio César Cáceres was disappointed with the goal conceded to Ameliano, a sloppy reaction to a long throw, but those basic errors should be erased with Ortiz’s return. El Decano have been on a good league run of late winning six of eight games only losing to the leading two sides Libertad and Cerro Porteño.
Although Resistencia got the better of their opponents in the first meeting of the season, a 2-1 win for Roberto Torres’ side, they head into this match up on a poor run. The defeat to Cerro Porteño in midweek marked the fourth consecutive game without a win and they’ve failed to score in the last three. This might be due to the absence of veteran midfielder Matias Duffard through injury, in the Uruguyan’s seven starts the newly promoted side have always scored.
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