Fluminense vs Olimpia
Estadio São Januario, Rio de Janeiro
21/05/2013; 21:00 (02:00 BST)
Quarter Final, 1st Leg
TV: Fox Sports (Latin America); ESPN (UK)
Olimpia are amongst the best 8 teams in South America and alongside Boca Juniors the only former champions still remaining in this year’s tournament. It has been an emotional (and lucrative) journey so far that not many would have precited after the opening game of their campaign, a drab 0-0 draw in the Preliminary round. Tonight they face a team that also reached the quarter finals last year only to be knocked out by Boca Juniors, Brazil’s Fluminense are one of the most expensive squads in the competition with players such as Fred, Rafael Sobis and Deco in their ranks.
Olimpia haven’t met Fluminense before in international competition but the bad news is that they have never won in Rio de Janeiro in six attempts, drawing three and losing three. The most recent game was a thrilling 3-3 draw with Flamengo when El Decano scored a hattrick of goals in just 15 minutes to level the game. Incidentally the previous two times they won the cup (1990 and 2002) they also played games in Rio. The team is likely to be very similar to the line-up that defeated Tigre in the previous round, once again all eyes are on Fredy Bareiro up front who has found the net five times and sits just one goal behind topscorer Jô. In defence Herminio Miranda has been a revelation with his goalscoring and Salustiano Candia has been relatively impressive to date – they will have a difficult task tonight trying to contain Fluminense.
Apart from the danger of former Lyon striker Fred, Olimpia have to contend with the confined surroundings of one of South America’s most intimidating arenas – the São Januario holds just 25,000 people but on entering the pitch the Paraguayan club will feel that the whole crowd are on top of them trying to squeeze the life out of them. Keep an eye out on referee Roberto Silvera’s performance as the Uruguayan will have a tough job in font of this crowd.
Fluminense XI (possible): Diego Cavalieri, Bruno, Digão, Leandro Euzébio, Carlinhos; Edinho, Jean, Wagner; Wellington Nem, Rhayner, Fred.
Olimpia XI (probable): Martín Silva; Salustiano Candia, Herminio Miranda, Julio Manzur; Richard Salinas, Jorge Baez, Eduardo Aranda, Richard Ortiz, Sebastián Ariosa; Juan Manuel Salgueiro; Fredy Bareiro
Selected Odds: Fluminense win 1.5, Draw 4.4, Olimpia win 8.2, 1-1 draw 8.4, Under 2.5 goals 1.82
Best Bet: Under 2.5 goals – just one of Flu’s home games went over (a 0-3 reverse to Grêmio) and expect this match to be tight with Olimpia unlikely to over-committ themselves.
Stats and Trivia
Olimpia vs Brazilian opposition (All Continental Competitions)
Pld 75 W 22 D 21 L 32 GF 91 GA 117
Olimpia in Rio de Janeiro (Copa Libertadores)
Pld 4 W 0 D 3 L 1 GF 4 GA 5
Olimpia’s results on 22nd of the month in continental comps – W 4 D 1 L 3
For more football previews check out CaStRoF’s betting tips