The reigning champions have already qualified for the knockout stage of the competition, recording a win in each of their five games in the group stage thus far. They have been dominant in their title defense, scoring 21 goals so far and conceding just two in five games.
Deportivo Tachira are currently in second place in the Group A standings and need at least a point from this fixture as they have seven points and Emelec are in third place with five points.
Palmeiras maintained their 100% record in the competition as they defeated Emelec 1-0 last time around. Tachira returned to winning ways with a 3-0 win against Independiente Petrolero in their previous outing.
This will be the fifth meeting between the two sides, with all of the previous matches coming in the group stage of the continental competition. The hosts enjoy a 100% record against the Venezuelan side, securing an emphatic 4-0 win in the reverse fixture last month.
Palmeiras form guide (all competitions): W-W-W-W-D
Deportivo Tachira form guide (all competitions): W-W-D-D-L
Mayke and Joaquin Piquerez are the two confirmed absentees with heel and thigh injuries respectively. Gabriel Veron and Luan were absent from the squad for the Serie A game against Juventude and face late fitness tests ahead of the game.
Jailson is a long-term absentee with a knee injury and has been sidelined for at least five months.
Injured: Jailson, Joaquin Piquerez, Mayke
Doubtful: Luan, Gabriel Veron
Robert Hernández will miss the game with an injury while Yerson Chacón is unavailable after being called up for the Maurice Revello Tournament by Venezuela.
Injured: Robert Hernández
Unavailable: Yerson Chacón
Palmeiras (4-3-3): Weverton (GK); Marcos Rocha, Gustavo Gómez, Benjamín Kuscevic, Jorge; Gabriel Menino, Danilo, Eduard Atuesta; Ronmy, Lopes, Gustavo Scarpa
Deportivo Táchira (4-4-2): Diego Valdés (GK); Pablo Camacho, Jean Fran Gutiérrez, José Luis Marrufo, Gabriel Benítez; Rafael Arace, Maurice Cova, Francisco Flores, Richard Figueroa; Anthony Uribe, Renny Simisterra
Verdão are on track to record the best group stage campaign in the history of the competition. While a few teams have already won all six games in the group stage, no team has done so with a goal difference of more than 19, with River Plate holding that record from the 2005 campaign.
Tachira have their fate in their own hands and will need to secure a win in this game to confirm their spot in the next stage. If they lose, they'll have to count on Emelec dropping points as well.
The hosts are in great form at the moment and we expect them to gun for a win here and we back them to secure a comfortable victory here.
Prediction: Palmeiras 3-0 Deportivo Tachira
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