Following a 2-0 loss to Colombia in their Copa América (CA) opener, Argentina has now lost three successive games against fellow CONMEBOL opposition since October 2018. All three have seen Argentina lose one half ‘to-nil’ while drawing the other, with at least one goal either way beyond the hour mark.
Argentina last played an uninterrupted run of (four) competitive games against fellow South Americans in Sept/Oct 2017. The return had plenty of room for improvement (W1, D3) with two of the draws being goalless. The other two matches saw Argentina concede first, and do so inside the opening 15 minutes of either half.
After a 2-2 draw against Qatar in their own opener, Paraguay has now won just one of their last nine matches (W1, D3, L5). Four of the defeats saw Paraguay lose one half ‘to-nil’, and their competitive record against other CONMEBOL nations paints a mixed picture.
A run of four consecutive 2018 World Cup qualification (WCQ) matches against sides in FIFA’s current top-20 (Mar-Oct 2017) returned a Paraguayan record of W2, L2. Each match saw one team score 2+ consecutive match goals in the second half, with two of the last three saw an own goal either way.
Players to watch: Argentina’s final warm-up match (vs Nicaragua) saw Lautaro Martínez bag a brace between the 61st-75th minute.
Against Qatar, Paraguay’s Derlis González scored in the second half to put Paraguay 2-0 up for the second match in succession (W1, D1).
Stat attack: Each of Argentina’s last five CA victories over opposition currently outside the FIFA top-20 has yielded a winning margin of 3+ goals.
Four of Paraguay’s last six WCQ matches separated the teams by just one goal.
Three of the last four competitive H2H meetings have seen at least one team fail to score before half-time.
Will not play
Santa C. R.
Referee: Sampaio W. (Bra),
Venue: Mineirão (Belo Horizonte)