Brazil will take on Panama in a friendly at the Dick’s Sporting Goods Park in Denver on Sunday as two teams continue their preparations for the Copa America Centenario.
Panama are the invited nation in this edition of the Copa America which is expanded to a 16-team competition and will be making their first appearance in the tournament. The Los Canaleros were held to a 0-0 draw against Venezuela in their first warm up game on Tuesday, which left them with just one win from their last four games. They have also failed to score in three of their last four games and head-coach Hernan Dario Gomez will be keen to see an improved performance from his boys on Sunday evening.
This will be Brazil’s one and only friendly for the preparation of Copa America 2016. The Selecao are coming on the back of consecutive 2-2 draws and struggled to live up to the expectations in recent outings. They managed just 2 wins from their last 6 matches, with 3 draws and a defeat; all of which part of World Cup qualifying campaign for Russia. They have managed just one clean sheet during the period, scoring 11 goals and conceding 8.
Brazil will be without their star man Neymar for the Copa America Centenario, but the veteran playmaker Kaka has been recalled as a late replacement for the injured Douglas Costa. There is plenty of flair and talent in the midfield in Chelsea’s Willian and Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho. But the player who is in limelight at the moment is Santos midfielder Lucas Lima, who has been handed number 10 shirt for the tournament.
Panama: Predicted Line-up (4-4-2)
Penedo – Henriquez, Machado, Miller, Baloy – Pimentel, Cooper, Tejada, Gomez – Diaz, Buitrago.
Brazil: Predicted Line-up (4-3-3)
Alisson – Miranda, Gil, Alves – Gustavo, Augusto. Lima – Willian, Coutinho, Hulk.
Panama vs Brazil: Head-to-Head
Brazil defeated Panama 4-0 on 3rd June 3, 2014, the last time they faced each other when in a friendly match.
Brazil had won in all the three matches played against Panama across all competitions since 1952, with a goal aggregate reading 14 to 0.
Panama vs Brazil: Prediction
Despite this being a friendly Brazil are desperate for a win to go into the tournament in good spirit. Panama don’t come across teams of Brazil’s quality that often and they need to do better than what they did against Venezuela on Tuesday, if they are to walk away with something from this game.
A number of players in the Brazil are desperate to impress and a side like Panama gives them the perfect opportunity. Dunga won’t be satisfied with anything less than a win here and certainly want to avoid the fate of Chile against Jamaica on Friday night.
My exact score prediction for this friendly is Brazil 3-0 Panama.