2019 Copa Libertadores – Cruzeiro vs River Plate Preview & Prediction

THE FACTS

When is Cruzeiro vs River Plate taking place? Tuesday 30th June, 2019 – 23:15 (UK)

Where is Cruzeiro vs River Plate taking place? Mineirao, Belo Horizonte

What television channel is Cruzeiro vs River Plate on? Fox Sports in South America. No broadcast in UK.

Where can I stream Cruzeiro vs River Plate? Fox Sports Play

Where can I get tickets for Cruzeiro vs River Plate? Check official club websites for ticket details

THE TEAM NEWS

CRUZEIRO

  • Cruzeiro will be close to full strength ahead of this game with their lone absentee right-back Ederson due to injury.
  • The hosts will rely on what Fred can do upfront. The former Brazil international has rediscovered his top form playing in the Brazilian Serie A and currently has four goals with two assists in the 2019 Copa Libertadores.
  • Cruzeiro should have the edge with the home-field advantage but their recent form has not been great. The Brazilian side is currently riding a five-game winless run across all competitions (D3, L2) and they have won just twice in their last 10 games overall (W2, D5, L3). They have also lost just once in their last five home matches (W2, D2, L1).

RIVER PLATE

  • River Plate could miss two of their most experienced players for this match. Javier Pinola has been ruled out though injury and Juan Fernando Quintero is out as well, while Leonardo Ponzio will be a game-time decision due to a thigh problem. Plus, manager Marcelo Gallardo is doubtful on whether to start Exequiel Palacios or Nicolas de la Cruz in midfield.
  • Keep an eye on Franco Armani here as the Argentina international will be instrumental for River if they want to go through into the next round and will probably be tested early and often by a strong Brazilian attack that will aim to establish a differential sooner than later.
  • La Banda Sangre (RIV) are riding a four-game undefeated streak in competitive matches (W2, D2) and they also won their two pre-season friendlies. River have not lost since May when they lost the first leg of the Recopa Sudamericana against Atletico PR, a title they still clinched thanks to a 3-1 win on the aggregate score. Marcelo Gallardo’s men are also riding a three-game undefeated streak away from home.

THE PREDICTION

River Plate will be missing several important players ahead of this game but Cruzeiro’s recent form has been nothing short of dreadful. Plus, the Argentinian side registered a 3-0 win in their most recent visit to Cruzeiro back in 2015, so all signs point to them earning a spot in the 2019 Copa Libertadores quarterfinals. This should be a low-scoring affair, however, as Cruzeiro’s last five games have featured under 2.5 goals scored, just as in four or River’s last five outings.

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