MX23RW : Sunday, September 26 06:36:05| >> :600:5839688:5839688:
Apr 29, 2021 at 11pm UK at Estadio San Carlos de Apoquindo
CatolicaUniversidad Catolica
Argentinos JrsArgentinos Juniors

Rebolledo (52'), Pablo Astaburuaga Montoya (57')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Florentin (23'), Hauche (51')
Florentin (38')

Preview: Universidad Catolica vs. Argentinos Juniors - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Thursday's Copa Libertadores clash between Universidad Catolica and Argentinos Juniors, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Universidad Catolica are searching for their first win in the group stages of the Copa Libertadores when they host Argentinos Juniors on Thursday evening.

The Chilean outfit have won all four of their matches at Estadio San Carlos de Apoquindo since the turn of the year, while the visitors have failed to win any of their last three away games.

Match preview

Universidad Catolica were defeated in their opening Group F match last Friday, losing 2-0 away to Colombian side Atletico Nacional.

First half strikes from Andres Andrade and Jefferson Duque were enough to seal all three points for the hosts, inflicting defeat on the Santiago-based outfit for just the second time this year.

Catolica, 15-time Chilean Primera Division champions, currently sit third in the table after winning three of their opening four matches and are just two points off the summit with a game in hand on league leaders Audax Italiano.

More domestic success is high on the agenda once again for Catolica this campaign, but they are now looking to improve in the Copa Libertadores after being eliminated in the group stages in the last two seasons.

Manager Gus Poyet, who took charge of the club in February, is hoping that his new side can quickly bounce back from their defeat last week and a win on Thursday would maintain their 100% record on home soil since the turn of the year.

Argentinos Juniors, meanwhile, secured their first three points in Group F with a 2-0 home victory against Uruguayan outfit Club Nacional last Tuesday.

Gabriel Avalos opened the scoring just before the half-hour mark and even though Carlos Quintana was dismissed in the final 10 minutes of the match, Gabriel Milito's side were able to score a second and seal the win, thanks to a strike from Emanuel Herrera in the 88th minute.

Since that victory, the Bug have drawn 1-1 at home to 10-man Banfield in the Argentinian Primera Liga, a game in which they conceded a 95th-minute equaliser, leaving them in ninth place and five points behind the top four.

Former Barcelona and Argentina centre-back Milito took charge of Argentinos Juniors in January, however he has not had the best of starts, winning just three of his 11 league games at the helm.

Victory in the Copa Libertadores was a good result to open their account in Group F and Milito will be keen to prove that he and his players can compete against strong opposition.

Securing another three points on Thursday could keep Argentinos Juniors at the top of the group if Atletico Nacional fail to win against Club Nacional.

Universidad Catolica Copa Libertadores form:
  • L

Universidad Catolica form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L

Argentinos Juniors Copa Libertadores form:
  • W

Argentinos Juniors form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • D

Team News

Universidad Catolica midfielder Felipe Gutierrez, who has yet to play for the club since joining earlier this year, is ruled out for around three months with a serious knee injury.

Poyet is unlikely to make too many changes to last week's first XI, but central midfielder Diego Buonanotte and winger Diego Valencia could be two players that start on Thursday ahead of Marcelino Nunez and Jose Pedro Fuenzalida.

For Argentinos Juniors, defender Quintana is suspended after receiving two yellow cards in the last match, so either Kevin Mac Allister or Pablo Minissale is expected to start as a result.

Avalos is set to keep his place up front alongside Gabriel Hauche, which would see experienced forward Herrera start once again on the bench.

Universidad Catolica possible starting lineup:
Dituro; Fuenzalida, Astaburuaga, Huerta, Parot; Buonanotte, Saavedra, Aued; Valencia, Zampedri, Lezcano

Argentinos Juniors possible starting lineup:
Chavez; Di Cesare, Torren, Minissale; Sandoval, J. Gomez, Moyano, E. Gomez; Carabajal; Avalos, Hauche

SM words green background

We say: Universidad Catolica 1-1 Argentinos Juniors

Argentinos Juniors will be looking to build on their opening win in Group F by claiming another three points to put themselves into a strong position to progress to the knockout stages.

Meanwhile, Universidad Catolica know that a defeat on Thursday could edge them closer to a third successive elimination at this stage of the Copa Libertadores.

Both teams have the ability to cause each other problems, but with little to separate the two sides, a draw could be on the cards in the Chilean capital.

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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