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Atletico Tucuman vs Junior Predictions, Betting Tips and Match Previews

  • 22:15
  • Expired
  • Estadio Monumental José Fierro
Atlético Tucumán
Junior

Tip Reasoning

Junior bring a narrow 1-0 lead to north-west Argentina after last week’s first leg. Junior had more of the games chances but Cristian Lucchetti was in inspired form in the Atletico goal. Junior survived a scare in the second half when Tucuman hit the post, but eventually made the breakthrough on 72 minutes. Tucuman sat deep and looked to play on the counter last week but it is likely to be roles reversed tonight with the Argentine outfit on home soil and a goal behind.

A bitter dispute, missed flights, forgotten kit and comical scenes of the team bus racing down an Ecuadorian highway 1 hour after the scheduled kick off time – it’s fair to say Atletico Tucuman’s first appearance in the tournament has been far from dull. Despite all of the off the field shenanigans they find themselves here with a real shot of making the group stage. They faced off with El Nacional in the last round, totally dominating the home leg but managing to draw 2-2 before grabbing a gutsy 1-0 win in Quito to advance.

With the Argentine domestic season yet to resume, Tucuman have not played since last week’s encounter. When it does resume they will find themselves in a solid, if unspectacular position of 13th out of 30 teams, with a record of 5-2-7.  That being said, boss Pablo Lavallen has only been in the job for around 2 months, after replacing the man who achieved qualification, Juan Manuel Azconzabal. On home soil El Tecano are very strong, having lost only two competitive outings since November 2014.

Junior have more experience on the big stage,  having competed in the Libertadores on 12 occasions. The last of those came in 2012, where they were eliminated in the same group stage they are trying to qualify for here. Prior to this tie, Junior made short work of Venezuelan side Carabobo, winning 1-0 away and 3-0 at home.

Unlike their opponents, Junior have been in the domestic action. It’s been far from a happy start, with the Barranquilla outfit losing all three games. However, that can be excused somewhat by the fact they have been giving priority to the Copa, fielding heavily rotated teams in the league. Said rotation was present once more over the weekend, as they lost 2-1 on home soil to Alianza Petrolera.

The onus is on the hosts in this second leg, Junior have a lead to sit back on and will look to play on the counter. Given Tucuman’s impressive home record, an away win over the 90 minutes is very unlikely. All the same, Junior can afford a defeat and still qualify, so long as it is by one goal.  One goal for the Colombians would mean Tucuman need a minimum of three. The outcome of the tie should never really be over, barring any miracle scorelines, so we anticipate that there will always be one side desperately pressing for a goal throughout the game, as well as another sitting deep in their own half looking to play on the counter.

This has become a common theme in the games contested in the Libertadores this year, and tends to generate high amounts of corners. The odds on over 9 match corners simply look too good to turn down.  Tucuman’s home leg vs El Nacional was played in a similar fashion, and the home side wracked up a mammoth 16 corners alone. With Tucuman looking to pile on pressure, and Junior finding space to counter, we envisage high amounts once more, certainly enough to cover our tip.  As far as the result itself goes, we fancy Atletico to get the job done. We’ve discussed their home strength and coupled with the fact Junior have lost 7 of the last 10 away games, we predict a 2-0 home win.

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