MX23RW : Saturday, July 4 14:27:57| >> :600:1185650:1185650:
Jun 22, 2019 at 8pm UK at Arena Corinthians, Sao Paulo
Attendance: 42,317
FT(HT: 0-3)
Casemiro (12'), Firmino (20'), Everton (32'), Alves (53'), Willian (90')

Preview: Peru vs. Brazil - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews the Copa America group-stage clash between Peru and hosts Brazil in Sao Paulo, including team news and predicted lineups.

Copa America hosts Brazil take on Peru in Sao Paulo on Saturday knowing that they still have some work to do if they are to claim top spot in Group A.

The Selecao were held to a frustrating goalless draw by Venezuela in their last outing to leave them on four points from two matches, level with opponents Peru in second.


Peru coach Ricardo Gareca during the match against France on June 21, 2018© Reuters

Despite having a one-man advantage for the final 15 minutes of their opening fixture against Venezuela, Peru were unable to break down their opponents - as was the case for Brazil four days later - to leave the pressure on against Bolivia.

Ricardo Gareca's men were the strong favourites to come out on top against the competition's lowest-ranked side, but things did not exactly go to plan at the iconic Maracana.

Peru had a couple of bright moments in the opening 10 minutes, testing the opposition keeper and then having a penalty shout waved away, but they otherwise lacked ideas in the final third and fell behind to a controversially-awarded spot kick.

Trailing to Marcelo Moreno's 28th-minute penalty, La Blanquirroja slowly started to find some rhythm and they were level before half time as ageing striker Paolo Guerrero showed he still has it by knocking the ball past Carlos Lampe and rolling it into an unguarded net.

Guerrero also played a big part in Jefferson Farfan's goal 55 minutes in, which was added to by Edison Flores on the breakaway late on to add a bit of gloss to the 3-1 scoreline.

Peru were far from their best in Rio, though, and with Venezuela favourites to take three points off Bolivia in the other Group A match on Saturday, they have to target a point from their meeting with Brazil.

Following their comeback win over Bolivia, Peru are unbeaten in their last seven Copa America games, winning four and drawing three - their longest unbeaten run in the competition's history.

This match is not quite in the must-win category in the same way as the Bolivia one was - in the words of Gareca, at least - so La Blanquirroja may decide to go for more of a defensive-minded approach to claim the point they are after.

Recent form in Copa America: DW
Recent form (all competitions): WLWLDW


Brazil attacker Gabriel Jesus has a goal disallowed by VAR in the Copa America clash with Venezuela on June 18, 2019© Reuters

For the second match running, Brazil's players were booed by their supporters as they failed to find a way past a stubborn Venezuela side in Salvador on Wednesday.

Following their lacklustre 3-0 win over lowly-ranked Bolivia in their opening match, with all three goals coming in the second half, the Selecao toiled for large parts - arguably playing better than they did in their opener - but could not find the goal they were after.

Brazil had the ball in the back of the net three times at the Arena Fonte Nova, but all three goals were chalked off, including second-half efforts from Gabriel Jesus and Philippe Coutinho - the hero in the first match with a brace.

Had Tite's men found a way through they would have effectively had the group wrapped up for this final round-robin fixture. As it is, though, they need to avoid defeat if they are to finish top, setting up what should be a more favourable last-16 tie.

They managed just one shot on target against Venezuela - their least in a game over the last four Copa America tournaments. At the other end of the field, Brazil have now kept a clean sheet in each of their last eight Copa America home games, last conceding at home in this competition in 1989.

The Selecao also extended their unbeaten run with the stalemate in Salvador, making it 12 matches without defeat since losing 2-1 to Belgium in the World Cup quarter-finals last summer.

That defeat, though, combined with their underwhelming recent record in major tournaments, explains why supporters remain sceptical about this current crop.

Only by going all the way in this year's competition on home soil will Brazil truly win over their demanding and passionate fans. The first step to achieving that is to put on a good show against Peru on Saturday to advance through in top spot.

Recent form in Copa America: WD
Recent form (all competitions): DWWWWD

Team News

Brazil attacker Everton celebrates scoring against Bolivia in the Copa America on June 14, 2019© Reuters

Tite used Fernandinho and Casemiro in holding midfield against Bolivia but recalled fit-again Arthur to replace the latter last time out.

That combination is unlikely to be broken up here, but there could be changes further up the field.

Gremio forward Everton has performed well from the bench in Brazil's first two games and has perhaps done enough to dislodge David Neres on the left of the three-man attacking midfield.

Up top, Roberto Firmino has started both matches so far but Jesus is pushing for inclusion.

As for Peru, Gareca has no fresh injury or suspension concerns and may go with the same XI that battled to victory over Bolivia.

Flores scored from the bench earlier in the week and may has given his manager something to think about.

Farfan and Guerrero were Peru's key men last time out and will surely retain their places here.

Guerrero has scored 12 Copa America goals - the joint most among currently active players, level with Chile's Eduardo Vargas.

Peru possible starting lineup:
Gallese; Advincula, Zambrano, Abram, Trauco; Yotun, Tapia; Polo, Farfan, Cueva; Guerrero

Brazil possible starting lineup:
Alisson; Alves, Marquinhos, Silva, Luis; Casemiro, Arthur; Richarlison, Coutinho, Everton; Firmino

Head To Head

Brazil have lost just one of their last 18 meetings with Peru in all competitions, but that loss came in the most recent Copa America tournament in 2016 as they failed to progress from the group stage for the first time in three decades.

The Selecao have been beaten in three of their 17 previous encounters with Peru in this competition, scoring 34 goals and conceding 13.

Peru are unbeaten in their last two away meetings with Brazil in the Copa America, however, winning 3-1 in 1975 and drawing 0-0 in 1989.

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We say: Peru 0-1 Brazil

Neither team has looked particularly good in their opening two games. Brazil beat Bolivia before drawing with Venezuela, as was the case for Peru, and now they are under a little pressure to pick up three points at Arena Corinthians.

We are backing the tournament hosts to edge Saturday's match to claim top spot, which will leave their opponents sweating over their place in the knockout stages.


Who will win Saturday's Copa America group-stage clash between Peru and Brazil?

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Brazil attacker Everton celebrates scoring against Bolivia in the Copa America on June 14, 2019
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