Copa Libertadores - A preview of Matchday 2
Unlike the UEFA Champions League group stages, the Copa Libertorders group games come thick and fast leaving teams barely anytime to rest before their next outing. It was only last week that matchday 1 took place, but South America's best 32 teams will head out to battle again - starting on Tuesday.
GROUP A: The only winners in group A on matchday1, Internacional will be taking on Alianza Lima of Peru. Internacional whom in 2017 were playing in the second tier of Brazilian football go into the game as clear favourites and will be very hopeful of adding another victory especially in front of their home fans.
The other game in group A champions River Plate will be looking for their first win as they continue to adjust to life without South American player of the year Gonzalo "Pity" Martinez who departed for Atlanta United in the recent transfer window. River Plate, like Internacional, are heavy favourites for the game, but unfortunately for them, this will not faze their opponents Club Deportivo Palestino who in the qualifier's stunned Colombian powerhouse Independiente Medellín.
Internacional vs A. Lima |Kick Off: 00:30 GMT - 14/03/19
My Prediction: Internacional to win 2-0
River Plate vs Palestino |Kick Off: 00:30 GMT - 14/03/19
My Prediction: River Plate to win 3-0
GROUP B: In group B Cruizero who won on Matchday 1 with a smash and grab a win over Argentinian outfit, Huracán will host Deportivo Lara in Bele Horizonte. While the Argentinan side will play Emelec. Huracán need some air blowing into their balloon as they have lost their last four matches in all competitions are desperate for a win of any kind going into the game to add some confidence to their side going forward in the Libertadores.
Cruizeiro vs Lara |Kick Off: 22:15 GMT - 13/03/19
My Prediction: Cruzeiro to win 3-0
Emelec vs Huracan |Kick Off: 02:00 GMT - 15/03/19
My Prediction: 0-0 Draw
Group C: Olimpia will host Universidad de Concepción who last week took part in the epic 5-4 win over Sporting Cristal. They will be hoping that hitman Patricio Rubio can add to the three goals that he already has. Olimpia will try and make it difficult for Universidade as they are not afraid to sit back and soak up the pressure and punish teams on the counter-attack as they have done this season with much success as they remain unbeaten in the Paraguayan top flight. Universidade, on the other hand, had a tough time at the weekend as they were humiliated by Palestino 4-1.
Sporting Cristal who suffered a heartbreaking last-minute goal loss, bounced back at the weekend with a narrow victory over Unión Comerci. The success also included a much needed clean sheet for the backline to bring back some confidence following the five goals they flooded in previously. Godoy Cruz, their opposition, will want to stop the bore-fest they have produced in the last three games where they have drawn 0-0 in each of them.
Olimpia vs Universidade |Kick Off: 22:15 GMT - 12/03/19
My Prediction: Olimpia to win 1-0
Sporting Cristal vs Godoy Cruz |Kick Off: 00:30 GMT - 13/03/19
My Prediction: 1-1 Draw
Group D: Flamengo, following their away win last week in Bolivia will take on Ecuadorian side L.D.U. Quito at the famous Maracanã Stadium. Teenage sensation Lincoln will be looking to make a name for himself following his disappointing displays in the recent Under 20s South American Championships for Brazil.
Penerol of Uruguay, who have won 4 out of 4 games in the Uruguayan Premier Division will want to take that form into the Copa Libertadores when they host CD San Jose, who put in a promising performance in there last outing at Home to Flamengo despite their unfortunate 1-0 defeat.
Flamengo vs L.D.U. Quito |Kick Off: 00:30 GMT - 14/03/19
My Prediction: Flamengo to win 1-0
Penerol vs CD San Jose |Kick Off: 02:00 GMT - 14/03/19
My Prediction:| CD San Jose to win 1-0
Group E: Cerro Porteno, the Paraguayan League Runners up in 2018, last week pulled off an upset with an away win at Brazilian side Atlético Mineiro thanks to a goal from Argentine striker Diego Churín. In Matchday 2 they will be praying that karma doesn't come back to haunt them as their opponents Zamora will be playing the role of the underdog this time around.
Atlético Mineiro will want to bounce back following the loss on matchday 1, but they have a tricky tie away in Uruguay where they will play Nacional of Montevideo.
Cerro Porteno vs Zamora |Kick Off: 22:15 GMT - 13/03/19
My Prediction: Cerro Porteno to win 1-0
Nacional vs Atlético Mineiro Kick Off: 00:30 GMT - 13/03/19
My Prediction: 1-1 Draw
Group F: Luiz Felipe Scolari, Manager of Brazilian Champions Palmeries, will be keen to ensure that his side continues on from their impressive win away at Colombian Champions Junior FC as they take on a struggling Melgar side who haven't won any of their last four matches.
Junior FC take on the Argentine side San Lorenzo with both teams looking to claim their first win of the competition.
Palmeries vs Melgar |Kick Off: 22:15 GMT - 12/03/19
My Prediction: Palmeries win 3-1
San Lorenzo vs Junior FC |Kick Off: 22:15 GMT - 13/03/19
Group G: Runners Up Last year, Boca Juniors will host Colombian side Tolima at La Bombonera in Buenos Aires, Cristian Pavon will be hoping to perform as well as he did in last year
competition to help them go one step further than last year.
Copa Sudamericana Champions, Athletico Paranaense will be hopeful of beating Jorge Wilstermann in their own back yard to earn their first points of the campaign. They go into the game with confidence following an 8-2 victory at the weekend.
Boca Juniors vs Tolima |Kick Off: 22:15 GMT - 12/03/19
My Prediction: Boca Juniors to win 1-0
Athletico Paranaense vs Jorge Wilstermann |Kick Off: 00:00 GMT - 15/03/19
My Prediction: Athletico Paranaense to win 1-0
Group H: Libertad, the only team with a convincing win after matchday 1, sacked there manager, Leonel Alvarez due to allegedly sleeping with another players wife. This week Libertad take on 2017 Libertadores Champions Gremio. Gremio's star forward Luan will be hoping to re-find his form which inspired his side to the lift competition.
Deportivo Universidad Católica, Bounced back from last weeks heavy defeat with a win at the weekend and will hope to carry on as they left off on Saturday when they face Rosario Central at the Estadio San Carlos de Apoquindo (Santiago, Chile).
Gremio vs Libertad |Kick Off: 00:30 GMT - 13/03/19
My Prediction: Gremio to win 2-0
Deportivo Universidad Católica vs Rosario Central |Kick Off: 00:30 GMT - 14/03/19
My Prediction: 0-0 Draw