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Jun 17, 2021 at 11pm UK at Estádio Serra Dourada
Atletico GOAtletico Goianiense

Igor (72'), Natanael (77'), Maranhao (85')

Felipe (53')

Preview: Atletico Goianiense vs. Fortaleza - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Brasileiro clash between Atletico Goianiense and Fortaleza, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Atletico Goianiense and Fortaleza will be looking to maintain their perfect starts in the Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A when they meet at the Estadio Antonio Accioly on Thursday.

The hosts have claimed victories in both of their opening two league matches this season, while the visitors have won their opening three games, scoring eight goals in process.

Match preview

Atletico Goianiense extended their unbeaten run to seven matches in all competitions after playing out a goalless draw at home to Corinthians last Thursday in the second leg of their Copa do Brasil third-round tie.

The visitors were looking to overturn a two-goal deficit from the first leg, and even though they had more possession and more shots on goal than the hosts, they struggled to test goalkeeper Fernando Miguel, who had a relatively quiet evening between the sticks.

That result was enough for the Dragons to win 2-0 on aggregate and progress into the last 16 for the second successive year, with head coach Eduardo Barroco hoping his side can win the competition for the first time in their history.

Prior to last week's stalemate, Goianiense claimed an impressive 2-0 victory against six-time Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A winners Sao Paulo, thanks to strikes from Eder and Joao Paulo.

The Dragons – who were promoted to the top flight in 2019 – currently sit fourth in the table, three points behind Thursday's opponents Fortaleza. Barroco's men could move to the summit if they were to win by a two-goal margin.

As for Fortaleza, they extended their unbeaten run in all competitions to 13 matches when they claimed a narrow 1-0 victory at home to 10-man Sport Recife on Monday.

The Lion of the Pici dominated the game throughout and prevented the visitors from having a single shot on target, but they were unable to make a breakthrough until the 79th minute when substitute Wellington Paulista converted from the penalty spot, with the 38-year-old celebrating by taking a selfie with the rest of his teammates on the pitch.

That late goal was enough to secure all three points and keep Juan Pablo Vojvoda's side at the top of the Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A, level on points with Athletico Paranaense, who they will face in just under a month's time.

Fortaleza, who have won only one of their last six meetings with Goianiense – a 2-1 away victory in November 2018 – will move six points clear of Thursday's opponents and stay at the summit if they claim all three points on the road.

Atletico Goianiense Brasileiro form:
  • W
  • W

Atletico Goianiense form (all competitions):
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • D

Fortaleza Brasileiro form:
  • W
  • W
  • W

Fortaleza form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • W

Team News

Atletico Goianiense boss Barroco could name the same starting lineup and use the same 4-2-3-1 formation for the fifth successive game on Thursday.

Centre-backs Nathan and Eder are set to shield goalkeeper Miguel in a defence that has kept a clean sheet in each of the last four matches.

Central midfielders Willian Maranhao and Marion Freitas are likely to sit in front of the back four, with Ronald, Joao Paulo and Natanael all expected to play in advanced attacking roles in behind the lone striker Ze Roberto.

As for Fortaleza, Vojvoda may decide to freshen up his starting lineup on Thursday, after only two full days rest from their victory against Sport Recife on Monday.

A 3-4-1-2 formation is set to be used once again, which will likely see defenders Titi, Tinga and Marcelo Benevenuto play in the back three, although left wing-back Carlos Emiliano Pereira may drop to the bench at the expense of Bruno Melo.

Attacking midfielder Matheus Vargas, who began the last match as a substitute, could return to the first XI and start ahead of Luiz Henrique, while forwards Robson and David are set to lead the line up front, with Paulista expected to begin the game on the bench once again.

Atletico Goianiense possible starting lineup:
Miguel; Dudu, Nathan, Eder, Carius; Freitas, Maranho; Ronald, Joao Paulo, Natanael; Ze Roberto

Fortaleza possible starting lineup:
Alves; Tinga, Benevenuto, Titi; Pikachu, Felipe, Jussa, Melo; Vargas; Robson, David

SM words green background

We say: Atletico Goianiense 1-1 Fortaleza

Atletico Goianiense have shown in recent weeks that they are difficult to break down, having kept six clean sheets in their last seven matches across all competitions.

They face a Fortaleza side, however, who have scored 12 goals in their last five matches and have won each of their last four away games.

Thursday's game is set to be a closely-fought encounter between two in-form Brazilian outfits, and with little to separate both sides, a score draw could be on the cards.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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Friday's key events

· Starts at 12pm on BBC One, Eurosport 1 and discovery+

· Team GB's Victoria Thornley in heat four of the single sculls (2am)
· Team GB in heat three of the men's double sculls (2.50am)
· Team GB in heat one of the men's quadruple sculls (3.30am)
· Seven-time Norwegian Olympian Olar Tufte in action in the quadruple sculls (3.40am)

· Team GB's six archers compete in the ranking round (from 1am)

> Today's schedule in full
Todays Game Header Right
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5Athletico ParanaenseAthletico PR116231912720
11Atletico GoianienseAtletico GO124351014-415
16Sao Paulo12255812-411
17Sport RecifeSport12246711-410
18America MineiroAmerica Mineiro12237917-89

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