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Copa do Brasil | Third Round | 1st Leg
May 23, 2024 at 11pm UK
Estadio Heriberto Hulse

0 - 2

Meritao (85')
FT(HT: 0-0)
de Pena (89'), Lucas (90+3')
Lucas (48'), Xavier (55'), Luciano (84')

Preview: Criciuma vs. Bahia - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Copa do Brasil clash between Criciuma and Bahia, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Bahia are on the verge of a fourth successive trip to the round of 16 at the Copa do Brasil, as they travel to Estadio Heriberto Hulse for a date with Criciuma in the second leg of that third-round tie on Thursday.

In the opening leg, Bahiaco came away with a 1-0 triumph, extending their unbeaten run at home in this competition to four matches.

Match preview

Caio Alexandre in action for Bahia during an April 2024 match© Reuters

As has been the case for Criciuma in the Copa do Brasil throughout this year, their opening leg in this tie was another massive struggle.

Claudio Tencati's men scraped through their opening two matches at this tournament, eliminating Operario Ltda thanks to having a higher seeding after that encounter ended in a 0-0 draw, before claiming a 1-1 result against Brasiliense in round two and advancing on penalties (3-1).

They have not lost a home fixture since being beaten 2-1 by Brusque in mid-February while dropping two points the last time they featured at Estadio Heriberto Hulse versus Juventude in an April Serie A clash (1-1).

Tigre have not made it beyond the third round of this tournament since taking out America Mineiro in a shootout in 2021 (5-4) after being level on aggregate following the two legs (2-2).

Criciuma have not followed-up an opening leg defeat at the Copa do Brasil with a victory in their return engagement since defeating Londrina PR 2-1 in April 2014, though they were eliminated from that tie 3-2 on aggregate.

Not since a 3-2 triumph in a 2016 Serie B contest have we seen the club based in Santa Catarina defeat Bahia on their home field.

Bahia manager Rogerio Ceni  looks on during an April 2024 Serie A fixture© Reuters

Another strong second-half showing in the opening leg of this tie has the club from Salvador in a position to advance beyond the third round of this tournament yet again.

Heading into this encounter, Rogerio Ceni's men are riding a six-match unbeaten run in all competitions, winning five of those encounters by a single goal.

Esquadrao de aco should be quite comfortable playing away from home, scoring a combined six goals in their opening two matches in the 2024 Copa do Brasil, defeating Moto Club 4-0 before outlasting SER Caxias do Sul 6-5 on penalties after that game ended in a 2-2 draw.

You have to go back to July 2022 for the last time they were beaten within 90 minutes in the second leg of a Copa do Brasil tie, losing 2-1 versus Athletico Paranaense as they were eliminated 4-2 on aggregate.

The last time they failed to advance from a third-round tie at this tournament was in 2015 when Paysandu won 3-2 on aggregate, despite Tricolor claiming a 2-0 victory in the return leg.

Bahia have won three of their previous four matches against Criciuma in all competitions, keeping three clean sheets over that stretch.

Criciuma Copa do Brasil form:
  • W
  • W
  • L

Criciuma form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • L

Bahia Copa do Brasil form:
  • W
  • W
  • W

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

Team News

Jean Lucas of Bahia in action in April 2024© Reuters

Tobias Figueiredo is doubtful for Criciuma on Thursday, as the Portuguese defender on loan from Fortaleza is still recovering from a muscle injury, and Barreto sat out of the opening leg through suspension.

There were three players who did not start their second-round encounter in this competition who were in the opening lineup for the first leg of this tie - Miguel Trauco, Higor Meritao and Baltasar Barcia.

Expect to see Nicolas Acevedo sit out of another encounter for Bahia on Thursday due to an ACL injury, while Ryan could be back near the end of this month from an ankle issue.

Thaciano scored in the 56th minute of the first leg, while Marcos Felipe did not have to make a single stop as he collected a clean sheet.

Criciuma possible starting lineup:
Gustavo; Claudinho, Rodrigo, Angel, Trauco; Gabriel, Meritao, Bolasie; Barcia, Eder; Vizeu

Bahia possible starting lineup:
Felipe; Arias, Xavier, Kanu, Juba; Alexandre, Lucas; Biel, Ademir, Thaciano; Everaldo

SM words green background

We say: Criciuma 0-0 Bahia (Bahia advances 1-0 on aggregate)

The visitors should be more than comfortable playing in what we believe will be a close game, and we expect their poise in their backline will allow them to fend off any Criciuma attacks on Thursday.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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Group A

Q Germany Germany32107
Q Switzerland Switzerland31205
3 Hungary Hungary31023
4 Scotland flag Scotland30121

Group B

Q Spain Spain33009
Q Italy Italy31114
3 Croatia Croatia30212
4 Albania national flag Albania30121

Group C

Q England flag England21104
2 Denmark Denmark20202
3 Slovenia Slovenia20202
4 Serbia Serbia20111

Group D

Q Netherlands Netherlands21104
Q France France21104
3 Austria Austria21013
4 Poland Poland20020

Group E

1 Romania Romania21013
2 Belgium Belgium21013
3 Slovakia Slovakia21013
4 Ukraine Ukraine21013

Group F

Q Portugal Portugal22006
2 Turkey Turkey21013
3 Czech Republic Czech Republic20111
4 Georgia Georgia20111

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