MX23RW : Saturday, January 22 23:08:12| >> :600:773634:773634:
Dec 10, 2021 at 12.30am UK at Estadio Palestra Italia
Kevin (42')
Hugo (55'), Silva (76')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Preview: Palmeiras vs. Ceara - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday's Brasileiro clash between Palmeiras and Ceara, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Palmeiras and Ceara draw the curtains on their Brasileiro Serie A campaign on Thursday when they lock horns at the Allianz Parque Stadium.

The hosts have already clinched third place in the league standings and will be seeking to end their season on a high note, while the visitors could rise as high as seventh place with all three points.

Match preview

Palmeiras team huddle before the match on June 28, 2021© Reuters

Palmeiras were denied a third win on the trot last Monday when they were held to an uneventful goalless draw by a spirited Athletico Paranaense side at the Arena da Baixada.

In a game where clear-cut chances were at a premium, the hosts controlled proceedings from start to finish but failed to take advantage of their dominance as Palmeiras ended the game without a shot on target and just 24% of the ball possession.

Prior to that, the Palestra Alviverde clinched the Copa Libertadores title courtesy of a 2-1 win over Flamengo on November 27, which saw their run of four games without a win come to an end, before seeing off Cuiaba 3-1 away from home four days later.

With 63 points from 37 games, Palmeiras are currently third in the Serie A standings with a five-point cushion on fourth-place Corinthians and this has been owing to impressive displays at the attacking end of the pitch, where they boast the third-best record in the division with 57 goals so far.

Palmeiras' Matias Vina celebrates scoring their third goal with teammates on January 6, 2021© Reuters

Meanwhile, Ceara failed to return to winning ways last time out as they played out a bore draw with America Mineiro on home turf.

This followed a 2-1 loss at the hands of Flamengo at the Estádio do Maracana on December 1, which saw their run of four games without defeat come to an end.

With 50 points from 37 outings, Ceara are currently 10th on the log, level on points with Atletico Goianiense and America Mineiro, and one point behind seventh-placed Fluminense.

Having secured an 11th-placed finish last season, Tiago Nunes will be impressed by his side's performance this term and hope they can keep the juggernaut rolling to the very end and end their season on a winning note.

Defeat on Thursday, on the other hand, could see Ceara potentially drop outside the Copa Sudamericana places as they are separated by just two points with São Paulo, who are just outside the final qualification spot.

However, next up is the stern test of taking on an opposing side who they have failed to defeat in 12 of the last 15 meetings between the teams, picking up five draws and losing seven in that time.

Palmeiras Brasileiro form:
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • D

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

Ceara Brasileiro form:
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • D

Team News

Palmeiras coach Abel Ferreira during the match in December 2020© Reuters

Palmeiras head into the game with a clean bill of health and we expect the manager to make a few changes to the XI with minutes given to a few fringe players.

Brazilian youngster Gabriel Veron is back available for selection having sat out the game against Athletico Paranaense last time out due to a one-match suspension for picking up a red card against Cuiaba last Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Ceara will once again have to make do without the services of a few key players down the spine of the team.

The Brazilian trio of defender Buiu, midfielder Gabriel Dias and forward Erik will sit out the game as they continue their spells on the sidelines through injury.

With 10 goal involvements so far, Vina has been pivotal for Ceara this season and the 30-year-old midfielder will be one to look out for on Thursday.

Palmeiras possible starting lineup:
Vinicius; Vanderlan, Kuscevic, Luan; Luis, Danilo, Menino, Scarpa; Veron, Silva, Rony

Ceara possible starting lineup:
Ricardo; Igor, Otavio, Messias, Pacheco; Fabinho, Sobral; Mendoza, Vina, Lima; Jael

SM words green background

We say: Palmeiras 1-1 Ceara

Given Ceara risk dropping out of the Copa Sudamericana qualification places, we expect them to put up a fight and take the game to Palmeiras. The hosts have nothing to play for having already clinched third place in the standings and despite their superior crop of players, we predict the visitors will force a share of the spoils in this one.

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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Flamengo's Bruno Henrique celebrates scoring their third goal with Filipe Luis and teammates on August 1, 2021
Read Next:
Tuesday's Brasileiro predictions including Flamengo vs. Ceara
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