Brazil need a victory in this clash of the top two teams in Group A of the Copa America to guarantee finishing in first place. A draw should see both them and Peru through to the second round of the tournament, though. Brazil head into this game on the back of a 3-0 win in their opening game of the tournament against Bolivia, and a 0-0 draw with Venezuela in their second. Yet to concede a goal in the tournament, this is a defensively strong Brazilian side who have kept clean sheets in 13 of their last 16 matches in all competitions.
Peru have the same number of points as Brazil, and should not be taken lightly by the tournament’s host nation. They kicked off their Copa America campaign with a 3-0 win over Bolivia, and followed it up by mimicking Brazil’s 0-0 draw with Venezuela.
Peru vs Brazil Prediction: Peru 0-0 Brazil
A significant number of Ricardo Gareca’s Peru team have played their club football in Brazil, and they will be keen to impress this weekend. This Peru side are no mugs, and they will not roll over and just allow the home side to dominate. We expect this game to be tight and perhaps a little tedious, not least because a draw should be enough for both sides to go through to the second phase. Venezuela might still sneak through if they can beat Bolivia by enough goals, which may mean both these sides adopt a cautious approach.
Our recommended tip: Draw, 1X2
Our featured tip for this game comes from Paddy Power, where you can find odds of 4/1 on the 1X2 market on the game ending in a draw. We suspect that the game will end goalless. Odds of 4/1 offer good value for punters, and this bet also gives you a certain amount of flexibility when it comes to the precise final scoreline. Brazil are a very strong team defensively and they will need to be sharp to cope with the Peruvian front line. The Brazilians are also not at their best offensively as things stand, so we suspect this game will end all-square.
There have been 44 previous encounters between these teams but Peru have won just four of them. There have been nine draws and Brazil have won 34 times. The last time the two sides met in the Copa America was in June 2016, and it was a historic occasion. Peru won the game in Foxborough, Massachusetts, 1-0 to reach the quarter-finals of the competition and knock the Brazilians out.
The last time the teams met was in a World Cup qualifier in November 2016 in Lima. Brazil won the game 2-0.
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Players to watch: Paolo Guerrero & Philippe Coutinho
Peru striker Paolo Guerrero plays his club football in Brazil for Internacional, and should therefore be very familiar to both his opponents and the Brazil fans this weekend. The forward scored a goal and provided an assist in the 3-1 win over Bolivia, and was the star man in the Peruvian fightback from going a goal down to a 28th minute penalty. He has scored three goals in six Brazilian Serie A games in 2019.
With Neymar out of action with injury, much of the creative responsibility in the Brazil team has been delegated to Barcelona forward Philippe Coutinho. The problem is that he is not in the greatest form himself. He needs to sharpen up, and offer himself as the cutting edge to a Brazil attack that has looked too content with passing the ball around aimlessly in the tournament so far. Coutinho is certainly capable of doing so.