Sports Mole previews Wednesday’s Argentine Primera Division clash between Barracas Central and Union, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Both seeking their first wins in the new Argentina Primera Division, Barracas Central and Union go head to head at the Claudio Fabian Tapia Stadium on Wednesday.
The visitors are still licking their wounds following their group-stage exit from the Copa Sudamericana, where they finished third in Group H with 10 points from a possible 18 back in May.
Barracas Central were denied their first win of the new Argentine Primera Division campaign last weekend when they were held to a 1-1 draw by a resilient Tigre side.
In a cagey affair at the Estadio Jose Dellagiovanna, Bruno Sepulveda struck in the 21st minute to put the visitors in front heading into the interval but Mateo Retegui came off the bench to restore parity with 15 minutes left to play.
This followed a 1-1 draw with Central Cordoba in the season’s curtain-raiser on June 4, when Ivan Tapia and Plaza Colonia loanee Renzo Lopez scored for either side to force a share of the spoils.
While they have struggled to get up and running, Alfredo Berti‘s men head into Wednesday’s game unbeaten in each of their last four outings across all competitions, claiming two wins and two draws since April’s 2-0 defeat against Boca Juniors.
Elsewhere, Union turned in a resilient performance as they came from behind to salvage a 2-2 draw against Colon de Santa at the Stadium Brigadier General Estanislao Lopez on Sunday.
After falling behind to Mauro Luna Diale‘s first-half strike, Facundo Farias and Ramon Abila scored for the hosts to turn the game on its head, but 34-year-old Jonathan Alvez was calm under pressure as he converted his 92nd-minute penalty to force a draw.
Prior to that, Union kicked off the Argentine Primera Division campaign with a 2-1 defeat to Tigre on June 5, when Facundo Colidio and Diego Sosa scored in a five-minute spell to cancel out Alvez’s 56th-minute opener and hand Diego Martinez‘s side all three points.
Gustavo Munua‘s side head into Wednesday winless in four of their last five outings across all competitions — losing twice and claiming two draws in that time — with May’s 4-0 win over Junior Barranquilla in the Copa Sudamericana being the exception.
While they will be looking to pick up their first win of the campaign, they have also struggled to get going away from home, where they have managed just two wins since the turn of the year, losing six and claiming four draws in that time.
Barracas Central Argentine Primera Division form:
Barracas Central form (all competitions):
Union Argentine Primera Division form:
Union form (all competitions):
Berti will be unable to call upon the services of 26-year-old defender Juan Ignacio Diaz, who is set to sit out his third consecutive game after suffering a sprained knee in March’s game against Godoy Cruz.
With his assist against Tigre last time out, Tapia has now been involved in Barracas Central’s two goals so far and we expect the 23-year-old to retain his place at the centre of the park, alongside Deportivo Moron loanee Dylan Glaby and 35-year-old Jonatan Blanco.
Further up the pitch, we expect a front three of Neri Bandiera, veteran forward Pablo Mouche and 29-year-old Bruno Sepulveda, who has been involved in four goals in his last three outings.
Union, meanwhile, will make do with the absence of 22-year-old midfielder Juan Carlos Portillo, who is suspended after picking up a straight red at the weekend.
In his absence, teenager Juan Nardoni will push for a starting role in midfield, teaming up with Enzo Roldan, who made 20 appearances in the Argentine top flight last season.
On the injury front, Munua remains without the services of Argentine defender Brian Blasi, who has been out of action since last April through a muscle problem.
With his late equaliser against Colon, Alves has now scored in three games on the bounce and we expect the Uruguayan forward to spearhead the attack once again.
Barracas Central possible starting lineup:
Saracho; Mater, Ferreyra, Paz, Calderara; Blanco, Glaby; Mouche, Tapia, Bandiera; Sepulveda
Union possible starting lineup:
Mele; Britez, Calderon, Polenta, Corvalan; Roldan, Nardoni; Vera, Diale, Zenon; Alvez
We say: Barracas Central 2-1 Union
Barracas Central and Union into the game in need of a pick-me-up, having both endured slow starts to the new campaign. While they are evenly-matched on paper, we are backing the hosts to maintain their solid home run and come away with a slender victory.
For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.