Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Copa Libertadores Semi Final 1st Leg Previews

Guadalajara v Universidad de Chile (Live on Bet365.com, 0215BST Wednesday; UK Viewers only)
Internacional v São Paulo (Live on Bet365.com, 0145BST Thursday; UK Viewers only)

Guadalajara go into their semi final having only played the one competetive game, a 0-0 draw with Puebla on Sunday, since the 19th May. Also selling star striker Javier Hernández to Manchester United FC won't have helped matters either. The lack of competetive action is a worry for the Mexicans who have won both their home games 3-0 in the competition after being parachuted into the competition at the Round of 16 after the Swine Flu outbreak last year. Now those two games were held at the Estadio Jalisco, this game will be held at the Azteca, the home of deadly rivals América. If Universidad de Chile, making their first appearence at this stage since 1996, are to have any chance, they can't do what Vélez Sársfield and Libertad have done and go home with that kind of defeat. What is more important is that the Chileans have also have 180 minutes more of competetive action and like their opponents have only sold the one player since the last round, Álvaro Fernández to MLS club Seattle Sounders. Not losing by three goals will be a big boost if "La U" are to make their first ever final.

The contrast between Internacional and São Paulo as they line up for their first leg is startling, Since the World Cup break Internacional are the only team in the top flight in Brazil with a 100% record. A record the hung onto with a 1-0 victory over reigning champions Flamengo at the Beira-Rio on Sunday. Are the omens on Inter's side? Renan, Tinga and Rafael Sobis were in the last successful Inter side in 2006 and with Celso Roth now in charge he's managed to get Inter ticking at the right time. São Paulo are a shambles at the moment, 1 point from 12 since the break has them plummet to 15th in Série A. Inter on the other hand have moved completely is the opposite direction thanks to picking up 12 from 12 since the World Cup break. A similar shambles to what São Paulo are now before the break they have climbed up the table and now lie on fourth. All the smart money will lie with Inter but to write São Paulo off completely could be a big mistake, especially of their big guns rise to the occasion.

We'll have a wrap up of these games later in the week.

LATE EDIT: It has come to our attention that São Paulo have sold striker Washington to Fluminense, meaning he returns to his previous club where he scored 21 goals for the second placed team in Série A. Get your money on Inter now.

No comments: