Paraguay vs Guatemala
Estadio Feliciano Cáceres
14/11/2012, 20.00 hs (23.00 hs GMT)
Four times in one year, it has been jokingly dubbed ‘El Clásico’, as Paraguay face Guatemala in yet another international friendly following the late cancellation of the game with Puerto Rico. They return to the scene of the first game in Luque which the albirroja won 2-1 . In Guatemala City it was also a victory for the South Americans but there was some fight back in round three, a 3-3 draw in Washington DC the highlight being Jonathan Fabbro’s international debut.
Gerardo Pelusso has named a fairly strong team although if the truth be told we are not sure what his best side is and neither is he, there have been 25 players used in the first five games – Cristian Riveros and Paulo Da Silva the only to start every match. Jonathan Fabbro (2 starts, 3 sub appearances) and Víctor Cáceres (4 starts, 1 sub appearance) have also featured in all five. The Uruguayan has all but confirmed his starting eleven for tomorrow as he looks to play with a 4-3-3 formation he often used at Olimpia.
The basic idea will be for Ortiz and Oviedo to play as holding midfielders giving Julio Dos Santos license to find space in the final third to either hit Luis Caballero with balls into feet or find Nuñez and Benítez over the top. The latter two will almost certainly have too much pace for the Guatemala backline so if Dos Santos finds his range they could have a lot of joy down the flanks.
From what we’ve seen of Guatemala they like to play possession football and they usually go through Marco Pappa who I believe isn’t available for this friendly. The other player that caused problems three months ago was ‘Pescadito’ Ruíz, a slippery player that will cause Da Silva and Aguilar some problems if he starts.
PREDICTION: Paraguay at home must win this, 2-0
BEST BET: Haven’t seen any odds but would be very confident of home win looking at stats below
Paraguay XI probable (4-3-3): Diego Barreto; Iván Piris, Pablo Aguilar, Paulo Da Silva, Miguel Samudio; Richard Ortiz, Fidencio Oviedo, Julio Dos Santos; José Ariel Nuñez, Luis Caballero, Edgar Benítez
Paraguay record vs Guatemala: Pld 9 W 7 D 2 L 0 GF 20 GA 9
Paraguay in Luque: Pld 4 W 2 D 1 L 1 GF 4 GA 3
Most frequent scoreline at home, 1-0 to Paraguay (23 times)
Paraguay vs CONCACAF opposition at home: Pld 8 W 7 D 1 L 0
Full Squad list
Goalkeepers: Diego Barreto (Cerro Porteño, Paraguay), Antony Silva (Deportes Tolima, Colombia)
Defenders: Paulo Da Silva (Pachuca, México), Pablo Aguilar (Tijuana, México), Iván Piris (Roma, Italy), Miguel Samudio (Libertad, Paraguay), Gustavo Mencia (Libertad, Paraguay), Salustiano Candia (Olimpia, Paraguay), Claudio Vargas (Sportivo Luqueño, Paraguay)
Midfielders: Víctor Cáceres (Flamengo, Brasil), Hernán Pérez (Villarreal, Spain), Víctor Ayala (Lanús, Argentina), Richard Ortiz (Olimpia, Paraguay), Marcelo Estigarribia (Sampdoria, Italy), Lorenzo Melgarejo (Benfica, Portugal), Fidencio Oviedo (Cerro Porteño, Paraguay), Julio Dos Santos (Cerro Porteño, Paraguay), Jonathan Fabbro (Cerro Porteño, Paraguay).
Strikers: Rogerio Leichtweis (Cerro de Franco), Edgar Benítez (Toluca, México), Luis Caballero (Krylya Sovetov, Russia), José Ariel Núñez (Libertad, Paraguay).
** Justo Villar (Estudiantes) and Lucas Barrios (Guangzhou Evergrande) are injured
By Ralph Hannah