Defensa y Justicia (Argentina) vs Palmeiras (Brazil)
Defensa y Justicia lifted their first professional title on January 23rd, when beating Lanus 3-0 in Cordoba in the Copa Sudamericana’s final to qualify for the Conmebol Recopa. Last Saturday, the team lost 2-1 away at Boca Juniors, which displaced them from the playoff spots in group B: El Halcon remain on 11 points, trailing Independiente in fourth by two. They won only one of their last four competitive games (one draw and two defeats). On a positive note, Defensa are on nine matches without defeat at home, winning seven and drawing two.
Palmeiras were crowned as Copa Libertadores champions for the second time in history on January 30th, when they won over Santos 1-0 thanks to a goal from Breno Lopez in stoppage time. Following Sao Paulo State Championship’s delay due to Covid-19, their last competitive game was two weeks ago, when drawing at Sao Bento 1-1 to make it eight points in four games, which places them at the top of group C table. Palmeiras are on six games unbeaten in all competitions, winning four and drawing two. Three of those took place on the road, with the team taking five points.
Palmeiras is a very strong attacking team, Defensa’s last 6 games had at least two goals, and I expect this trend to continue in the 1st leg of this Recopa Sudamericana.