Brazil and Peru meet in this year’s Copa America final, kicking off on Sunday at 5pm local time in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, which is 9/10pm in the UK/mainland Europe. Brazil will be overwhelming favourites to lift the Copa America trophy in their home country, whilst the odds are stacked against Peru who have reached the final for the first time in over forty years.
Brazil don’t have many decades without silverware in a major tournament, but that will be the case if Brazil don’t win this final on Sunday. The 2010’s has seen more bad than good for the national team, with some high-profile failures. However, it certainly looks like this current crop of players are desperate to make a name for themselves, and finally give the people of Brazil some joy again. Brazil have been solid at the back, and are yet to concede a goal in this tournament, with five consecutive clean sheets. Goalkeeper Alisson, who plays his trade with Liverpool, has probably forgotten what it feels like to concede a goal, as he also ended his domestic season with three clean sheets.
Going in the other direction, Brazil haven’t been at their sparkling best with goals coming sporadically in their first five games of this tournament. Gabriel Jesus was able to finally get a goal in this competition in their 2-0 win over Argentina, with Roberto Firmino getting the 2nd. Brazil allowed Argentina to have possession, and were outnumbered in terms of chances created, but most importantly, Brazil took their best moments as they got over the line and booked themselves a place in the final by virtue of defeating their biggest rivals. In Belo Horizonte in 2014, Brazil lost 7-1 to Germany, but in the same stadium, they were able to overcome the demons of the past to knock out Argentina. They’ll now head to Rio de Janeiro on Sunday to win their first Copa America since 2007.[geot exclude_country="US" ][/geot]
Peru have been the surprise package at this Copa America, and I tipped them to reach the quarter finals, and potentially semi-finals, but I didn’t believe they had what it takes to reach their first final since 1975. They had only qualified for the quarter finals by virtue of being one of the best-placed 3rd placed teams in their group, after earning 4 points against Venezuela and minnows Bolivia. In their final group game, they faced Brazil and lost heavily 5-0, deflating any hope that Peru could be a dark horse in this competition. However, they won on penalties against Uruguay in the quarter finals, before performing one of their best ever displays against Chile in the semi-finals – winning 3-0.
Two excellent goals in the first half from Edison Flores, and Yoshimar Yotun put Peru in command, as they looked to counter when Chile piled bodies forward. During additional time, veteran striker Paulo Guerrero coolly took his goal, as he took it past the keeper and slotted it in to put Peru in paradise. Peru goal keeper Pedro Gallese has been remarkable at times in this tournament, and he even saved a late penalty against Chile. He’ll need to bring another five-star performance if they are to win the Copa America in Brazil on Sunday.
Head to Head
Peru have only won this fixture once in the last 34 years, and that game came in the 2016 Copa America group stage, as Peru knocked out Brazil with a 1-0 score line. Brazil managed to get their revenge in this Copa America, as they won 5-0 in the final match day just a few weeks ago. Brazil generally have a lot of joy against Peru, winning five out of the last six, and 10 of the last 13. Peru have only won in Brazil twice in their history, but in 1975, Peru did go on to win the Copa America after beating Brazil 3-1. Can Peru produce another famous display to beat Brazil, or will it be business as usual for the Brazilians?
Predictions and Betting Tips
Brazil are at 1/3 to win the match in 90 minutes, with Peru at 17/2. For the sides to draw, that is at 10/3. To lift the trophy outright, Brazil are at 1/8 with Peru at 9/2. It’s no surprise the odds are what they are after Brazil demolished them just less than two weeks ago via a 5-0 score line, but since then, Chile have learned their lesson and managed to keep out both Uruguay and Chile. However, for Brazil to blow this opportunity, it would be one of the biggest upsets in Copa America history. I will back a Brazil win, with the score line being 4-0 at 14/1. Brazil haven’t conceded a goal at this tournament, so backing them to win to nil at 5/6 should be considered. To boost earnings on a Brazil win even further, you should bet on them to win both halves (2/1), or win by a 3-goal margin or more at 5/2.
For goal scorers, I’d back Gabriel Jesus to double his goal scoring tally with a 2nd successive game with a goal at 6/5, with my outlandish tip to be Thiago Silva to score at any time at 17/2. For the Peruvians, I’d back Edison Flores to get a goal at any time at 6/1. Unlike the semi-finals, this will go to extra time if required, so do consider backing Brazil to win after extra time (10/1), or on penalties at 9/1 for a high risk high reward.
Finally, for the tipsters, believe in Peru to make history by doing the unthinkable in Brazil. Anything can happen in football, and if Peru were to win 2-1, that is at 33/1.[geot exclude_country="US" ][/geot] [geot country="US,CA" ]
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