This has not been a particularly exciting Copa America. Defense has become paramount as low-scoring matches have become the norm with teams frequently looking to stall out the game against opponents. Three of the four Quarterfinals were 0-0 games that were decided by penalties, but the two heavyweights in South America are looking to change all that. Brazil and Argentina will meet for the 111th time on Tuesday with a spot in the Copa America Final on the line.
Brazil vs. Argentina
- Date and Time: July 2, 2019, 8:30 p.m. ET
- Location: Estadio Mineirao, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
- US Television Coverage: Telemundo
- Betting Line: Brazil -0.5 and -1, O/U 2 and 2.5
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Is this the year that Lionel Messi finally breaks through and wins an international title for Argentina? If they can beat Brazil on Tuesday, they will be favored to do so, even if they are likely to play the team that has continually been their bugaboo in Chile.
Argentina did not get off to a great start at Copa America. They were soundly thumped by Colombia in their opener and severely limited in a 1-1 draw to Paraguay in their second match. That left Argentina needing a win over lowly Qatar in their last Group Stage match to qualify for the knockout rounds, and they picked up a 2-0 win after goals from Lautaro Martinez and Sergio Aguero.
Martinez again got Argentina on the board early in their Quarterfinals match against Venezuela, with Giovani Lo Celso closing out the match after a goal in the 74th minute. It was Argentina’s best performance so far at Copa America, and fans are hoping this means they are rising to the occasion.
Brazil have been a mixed bag at this Copa America. They couldn’t get anything going until the second half against lowly Bolivia in their first match, but then poured it on after halftime in a 3-0 win. The boo-birds came out in the second game though, as the Selecao were unable to score against Venezuela, being held to a 0-0 draw. However, they managed to beat the second-best team in the group (Peru) by a score of 5-0 in their final match of the Group Stage with five different players getting in on the scoring.
The offense once again tailed off against Paraguay in the Quarterfinals though, nearly leading to an ignominious exit that would have sent shockwaves throughout the national team. Brazil were unable to score on Paraguay in 120 minutes despite Paraguay going down to 10 men in the 58th minute after a Fabian Balbuena red card. That sent the game to penalties where Brazil won 4-3 to advance.
Brazil Player to Watch
Alisson has had an incredible season. The days of Brazil not having a world-class goalkeeper have come to an end, as both Alisson and Ederson are first-choice goalkeepers for nearly every team in the world. Alisson has gotten the starting nod throughout Copa America, and he has yet to allow a goal in four matches. He has made some huge saves to keep Brazil’s dreams alive, and he should be the major factor once more in a tournament that has seen precious few goals.
Argentina Player to Watch
It’s got to be Messi. All of the attention is on Messi’s shoulders once more now that Argentina are in the semifinals. However, he has not looked particularly sharp at Copa America. This team is full of a lot of younger players now, and he doesn’t seem to have the same chemistry with those guys that he does with the old guard. Messi must find a way to make a difference here.
Brazil vs. Argentina Free Picks
I’m going with the under in this match as defense has been so vital throughout this competition. Neither team is wont to allow a bevy of goals, but I believe some Messi magic will be the difference. He is long overdue to win an international tournament for Argentina, and I think this is the year.
Brazil vs. Argentina Prediction: Argentina 1, Brazil 0
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