The final group stage in the Copa Libertadores gets heated this week as Argentian outfit Defensa y Justicia looks to win against Independiente del Valle. The match schedules for Thursday at the Florencio Varela, with kickoff at 1 pm.
The hosts enter into the clash after already cutting a ticket for the last 16. At the same time, the visitors can only finish as high as third in Group D. However; a win is needed to qualify for the Copa Sudamericana.
The hosts recorded a major shock victory last time out with a thrilling 4-3 victory over the Copa Libertadores holders Palmeiras. The much-needed win handed the hosts a spot in the last 16 while guaranteeing a second-place finish in the group stages with a game to spare.
Moreover, head coach Sebastian Beccacece is looking for redemption following their misfortunes during last year’s competition. Nevertheless, it has been an impressive campaign this season for the Hawks. The side managed to lose two matches in the group stage and finish a point behind Delfin.
On the other hand, it marks another disappointing campaign, failing to qualify for the last 16 in the past four years. So all that is left is memories of the Copa Sudamericana – which they won in 2019.
Defensa y Justicia vs Independiente del Valle Head to Head
Both sides faced each other once, with the game ending in a draw. Here is a look at their previous encounters:
- Palmeiras 3-4 Defensa
- Universitario 1-1 Defensa
- Atletico Tucuman 5-0 Defensa
- Defensa 1-2 Palmeiras
- Defensa 0-1 Union
- Independiente 3-0 Guayaqui City
- Universitario 3-2 Independiente
- Olmedo 1-3 Independiente
- Independiente 0-1 Palmeiras
- Independiente 3-1 LDU Quito
Defensa y Justicia Team News
A major boost for Sebastian is the return of the dynamic trio consisting of Romero, Franco Paredes, and Fernando Meza from coronavirus. Raul Loaiza might start on the bench to give way for Lautaro Escalante. Additionally, Meza might step in defense to replace Adonis Frias.
Independiente del Valle Team News
Jose Maria Carrasco remains unavailable for this clash while undergoing a knee injury. Furthermore, left-back Beder Caicedo is out after picking a tibia fracture. Apart from that, Pavia is highly likely to field the same starting XI that started last time. However, Efren Mera might get a recall into attacking midfield while Pedro Vite drops to the bench.
Prediction and Odds
Given the hosts are already in the last 16, incentive remains on the visitors to make the Copa Sudamericana.
- Goals Under 3.5
- Most Goals: 2H