Three in a Row?
Last year, Palmeiras became the first team to win back-to-back Copa Libertadores titles since Boca Juniors did it in 2001. Now, they want to become the first team to win three in a row since Independiente did it in 1975.
Their first stop on the way to glory will be in Asuncion, Paraguay, where they’ll face Cerro Porteno in the Round of 16. The Green Machine dominate the soccer lines for the first leg, but the Blue and Reds have been considerably better when playing at home.
Cerro Porteno: Fully Focused
Last week, Cerro Porteno lost 1-0 to Libertad with the Paraguayan top division title on the line. That result allowed Libertad to increase its advantage to seven points with only one game left. Therefore, Cerro Porteno is now fully focused on pulling off the stunner in the continental tournament.
The Blue and Reds finished the Group Stage with a 2-2-2 record, five goals for and four against. They lost their last home game to Olimpia 1-0. Nothing to worry about as they won the other two, against Penarol and Colon, with a 4-1 aggregate.
Fernando Romero, a 22-year-old striker, is the team’s top scorer in the tournament with two goals. You should also keep an eye on Alfio Oviedo and Robert Morales, who each have scored eight goals in the Paraguayan top division. Goalkeeper Jean Paulo Filho is another reason for you to consider wagering on the home side. Domestically, no other team has allowed less goals than the Blue and Reds with 13 in 21 games.
As expected, Cerro Porteno comes in as the betting online underdog. What I wasn’t expecting was such a tempting price (+420). Considering they’ve no major injury concerns, and the fact that winning the Copa Libertadores is all they’ve left, that’s a great deal.
Palmeiras Wants to Win it All
Palmeiras won the last two continental titles. This year, the Green Machine was the only team that won all its games during the Group Stage. That’s right, the reigning champs finished 6-0-0 with 25 goals for and only three against. No other team scored more. No other allowed less.
They scored three or more goals in every game on the road. First, they crushed Deportivo Tachira 4-0. Later, they defeated Emelec 3-1. Most recently, they had no mercy and humiliated Independiente 5-0.
As expected, several players from Palmeiras are among the tournament’s top scorers. Rafael Navarro leads the way with seven goals. He’s followed by Raphael Veiga with six. Last but not least, there’s Rony, who has scored three.
Summing up, the Green Machine totally deserves to be in control of the Las Vegas odds. They’re offering a -140 price, which means you would have to invest $140 in order to win $100. Needless to say, they’re used to the pressure of being the favorites. After all, they’re also among the favorites to win the 2022 title.
Unlike Cerro Porteno, Palmeiras still stand a chance to win the Brazilian Serie A. In fact, they sit atop the standings with a three-point advantage over Corinthians. Therefore, they’ll want to finish this series as soon as possible. Another resounding victory on the road would be enough.
Cerro Porteno vs Palmeiras Head-to-Head
- Previous Matches: 10
- Cerro Porteno Victories: 2 (10 goals)
- Palmeiras Victories: 4 (17 goals)
- Draws: 4
These two met for the last time in the 2018 edition of the Copa Libertadores. Curiously enough, it was also in the Round of 16, and the series also began in Asuncion. Palmeiras won the first leg 2-0 with two goals from Miguel Borja. He now plays for Atletico Junior. Cerro Porteno won the second leg 1-0 with a goal from Santiago Arzamendia. He now plays for Cadiz.
Porteno vs Palmeiras Game Information
- Date: Wednesday
- Time: 6:15 p.m. ET
- Location: Estadio General Pablo Rojas, Asuncion, Paraguay
- Porteno vs Palmeiras Live Stream: fuboTV
Porteno vs Palmeiras Betting Lines
|Cerro Porteno||+½ +110||+420||2½ Evo||½ -160o
|Palmeiras||-½ -140||-140||2½ -130u||1½ -120o
Porteno vs Palmeiras Prediction
We always say that a home underdog is a tempting underdog, and that hasn’t changed, but Cerro Porteno has no chance to defeat Palmeiras. The Green Machine is a well-balanced team that has lost only one of its last 21 games in all competitions. As if that wasn’t enough, the Blue and Reds have never beaten the Brazilian side when playing at home.
Go ahead and include Palmeiras in your soccer picks, but not to win straight up at -140. The team total over 1½ goals at -120 is a better option.
Score Prediction: Palmeiras 3, Cerro Porteno 1