Brazil travel to Paraguay for their sixth round of fixture on the South American World Cup qualifying campaign after a hard fought 2-2 draw at home against Uruguay.
Both teams drew their previous match by the same 2-2 score, Brazil against Uruguay and Paraguay against the surprise table toppers Ecuador.
Brazil are third in the table with 8 points, while Paraguay are fourth with same points and a win for either team here could take them to second depending upon how Uruguay fare in their match against Peru.
Paraguay have won just twice in their last 8 matches, while 4 of them were defeats.
They are unbeaten in their last two matches after a draw with Ecuador and a win against Bolivia.
Since their Copa America 2015 exit, Brazil have only lost one out of their 7 matches, with 4 wins and 2 draws.
The Selecao have failed to register a win in their last two away matches, 2-0 defeat to Chile followed by a 0-0 draw against Argentina.
Paraguay: Team News
Dario Lezcano scored two goals to deny Ecuador their fifth win the campaign and he is expected to retain his place in the attacking front.
Paraguay head coach Ramon Diaz is expected to opt for a 4-4-2 formation against Brazil and the veteran striker Roque Santa Cruz could be the partner for Lezcano.
Bournemouth winger Juan Itube is expected to start here along with Oscar Romero and Gustavo Gomez replacing Derils Gonzalez, Edgar Benitez and Bruno Valdez.
Paraguay Expected Starting Line-up (4-4-2)
Justo Villar – Miguel Samudio, Pablo Aguilar, Da Silva, Gustavo Gomez – Oscar Romero, Richard Ortiz, Nestro Ortigoza, Juan Iturbe – Dano Lezcano, Santa Cruz.
Brazil: Team News
Barcelona ace Neymar and PSG defender David Luiz are suspended for this match after receiving a booking in their last match against Uruguay.
The duo will be replaced by veteran Santos striker Ricardo Oliveira and Shandong Luneng defender Carlos Gil.
Expect these forced changes, all others who started against Uruguay are expected to retain their places in the starting eleven.
Brazil Expected Starting Line-up (4-3-3)
Alisson – Dani Alves, Miranda, Gil, Filipe Luis – Luiz Gustavo, Fernandinho, Renato Augusto – Willian, Douglas Costa, Ricardo Oliveira.
Paraguay vs Brazil: Head-to-Head Stats
The teams have met each other on 14 occasions, with Brazil winning 9 of them, Paraguay has 2 wins and the rest 3 were draws.
Paraguay’s home record against Brazil is also not that great after winning just 2 and losing 4 out of 7 meetings.
However Paraguay were victorious in their last home fixture against Brazil, buy a 2-0 score line in the qualifying fixture for World Cup South Africa 2010.
Paraguay vs Brazil: Prediction
Brazil will be desperate for a win after the draw in their last match against Uruguay. Neymar is suspended of this match and this is a huge blow to their chances and in his absence Douglas Costa is expected to lead the attack.
Paraguay held a strong Ecuador side to a draw in the last fixture and level on points with Brazil. Just like the Selecao, they will also want to win this game at home to keep the pressure on big teams like Argentina and Chile, who are below them in the table.
Brazil are win-less in two away games and could expect a tough encounter against a physical and are strong defense oriented Paraguay side.
I expect both teams to score and a draw will be a fair result, but for Brazil to win the likes of Douglas Costa and Willian must contribute big. But, keep an eye on Paraguay attacker Dano Lezcano, who scored a double in the last match against Ecuador.