Sep 11, 2013

Paraguay - Argentina

World Cup 2014, CONMEBOL Qualifiers

With 3 rounds remaining in the South American qualifiers, Argentina are tied on points for the first place with Colombia. However, they have basically secured their qualification to the World Cup, as they are 7 points ahead of the play-off position, and it is impossible for them to drop so many places. So the only thing left is to play the remaining games and to try and win the group. No pressure for them probably, and they definitely have the players to achieve this. For this current squad, the only notable absences are of Javier Mascherano and Gonzalo Higuain. Otherwise, all the stars are there, and their attack is set to shine once again (they have the best offense in the group), with Messi, Aguero and Lavezzi ready for work. On the other side we have a weak Paraguay side, 8 points behind the play-off spot, so they are virtually eliminated from the race. We've talked about them in the previous bet, against Bolivia, and I've mentioned there that they are using quite a young and inexperienced side, without many of their key players (I will copy/paste the list from the previous analisys: "Justo Villar - 101 caps, Alcaraz - 24, Dario Veron - 51, Victor Caceres - 52, Julio dos Santos - 33, Oscar Cardozo - 47 or Haedo Valdez - 66"). They did manage a good trashing of Bolivia, but 'La Verde' was in a similar situation. Can't see past Argentina here, as the quality and the experience should prevail. GL!

Argentina (-0.75 AH) @ 2.04, 4/10
Result: 2-5, WON

Uruguay - Colombia

World Cup 2014, CONMEBOL Qualifiers

This one is far from being a crucial match for any of the teams, but it will definitely impact the standings. Colombia is tied on first place with Argentina, so that would mean that a win today, even though it's improbable, would see them qualify mathematically to the World Cup. Even if they lose, they would still sit in a comfortable position, as - worst case scenario - they would still hold a 4 points-advantage, with 2 rounds remaining. For Uruguay this match is much more important, as Venezuela could reach them if they lose, and would just up the pressure for the last 2 rounds, while if they win, they would pretty much clinch the play-off place, and could even challenge a direct qualification. It's a pity that their home-slumps against Venezuela, Ecuador and Paraguay make them rather unreliable. And that's why I'm going for goals here, because both teams have huge offensive potential. Uruguay scored 15 goals in 6 home matches, 4th best home attack, but keep in mind that they also have one game in hand on the others, so that could very well change tonight. Forlan, Suarez and Cavani need no introduction, as they are one of the most feared offensive trios in the world. The Colombians haven't been so generous with the away goals, in average scoring just one/match, but they also have a lot of potential, with players like: Freddy Guarin, Falcao or Jackson Martinez. 7 out of their last 10 mutual games ended with at least 3 goals, and since Uruguay needs to step it up a notch, we have good chances of seeing an entertaining game again. GL!

over 2.25 goals @ 1.98, 4/10
Result: 2-0, HALF-LOST