Mineirao - Copa America
Both Argentina and Paraguay slumped to disappointing results in their opening Copa America fixture and are looking to make amends. La Albiceleste went down 2-0 to Colombia, while Los Guaranies threw away a two-goal lead to draw with Qatar.
Paraguay have only won one of the last seven meetings between the countries, but it was in their last match against Argentina. That was in qualifying for the 2018 World Cup almost three years ago, with La Albiceleste winning four of the seven before that.
None of Argentina’s big names fired at the weekend, while Angel Di Maria was replaced at half-time by Udinese’s Rodrigo De Paul. The Paris Saint-Germain forward is expected to retain his place, although Lionel Scaloni could be tempted to ring the changes after a poor performance.
Derlis Gonzalez could get the nod in Eduardo Berizzo’s starting line-up after coming on for Hernan Perez at half-time and taking just 10 minutes to get his name on the scoresheet. Newcastle United’s Miguel Almiron should keep his place in the XI for this huge game.
Argentina v Paraguay Preview and Predictions
Argentina have enjoyed a strong record against Paraguay in recent years, outscoring La Albirroja by 20 goals to eight in a run of four wins in five matches prior to the qualifying campaign for the last World Cup. La Albiceleste could use another convincing victory if they’re going to kickstart their Copa America campaign in Brazil.
Paraguay will come into the game with a degree of confidence though after drawing and beating Argentina in their last two meetings. Full-blown disaster never seems far away for La Albiceleste, and Berizzo’s side will be looking to take advantage of that in this fixture.
Los Guaranies had a disaster of their own in their opening match though, as they conceded two goals in the last 22 minutes against the lowly Qataris. That doesn’t help their case against an Argentina side that remains packed with talent.
Paraguay’s victory over Guatemala in their final warm-up fixture is their only win in their last nine matches, and Argentina have all the tools to win this game. They need the likes of Lionel Messi and Sergio Aguero to rise to the challenge, and with players like that available, they are the 4/9 favourites in the betting. Paraguay are 7/1, with the draw at 7/2.
Argentina to win and BTTS at 13/5
The Argentine defence is anything but watertight, and Paraguay pose a real threat in the final third, so this could be a great way to enhance the value on an Argentina victory.
Argentina to win and over 3.5 goals at 10/3
This bet would’ve paid out in each of Argentina’s last four victories over Paraguay. Three of those games produced six or more goals, with an Argentina to win and over 4.5 goals bet priced at 13/2.