The Cruzeiro return to winning ways was stalled big time with that shock home defeat to Chapecoense last weekend, ahead of which I wrote ....."Hosts have been clubgowi favourites for the last two years and we were championing them from early in the first of their two successive title winning campaigns. I must admit that a third looked highly unlikely after a very slow start to 2015 with Copa Libertadores games taking precedence, but after being eliminated from that, they switched coaches with Vanderlei Luxemburgo taking charge and the veteran coach, who has had more clubs than Tiger Woods ( this is his 28th tenure in Brazil alone....but I might have miscounted !) has turned them around in double quick time. They have won all three games under him, including consecutive away wins, scoring three goals in each, one of those came at AMG who are looking for a title win themselves and they had conceded just three time in five previous starts. These performances are all the more noteworthy as they came with Cruz having a lengthy injury list and with key players away on international duty and this is a club who seem sure to get stronger the longer this season goes. All the talk this week has been about making the top 4 and they are determined to do so as soon as possible, two road games after this and all eyes on three points and a repeat of last years 4-2 win in this fixture would do nicely."
They did not really show up, but perhaps we can forgive them that blip, it was one of the "new" early kick offs and that might have been against them. They get defensive midfielder Willians back from suspension today , but lose another in Charles to injury and also lose central defender Bruno Rodrigo to a yellow card ban ( just 3 clean sheets in 18 starts without him and we are talking about a two time champion team). On the plus side, they also get De Arrascaeta back from international duty to bolster the midfield.
Coritiba are still struggling to get anthing going, or to pull away from the relegation zone, but a 2-2 draw at Atletico Paranaense last time out in a big derby game might at least signal the start of some kind of recovery, but the point came at huge cost and means that today they are without four suspended players in defensive midfielder Joao Paulo, right back Norberto Neto, midfielder Ruy and forward Wellington Paulista. The first two named are big defensive losses and with both teams weakened at the back, it is easy to see goals today and odds, like yesterday in the Avai game, look too big, these two also face very tough midweek road games and points are going to be easier to come by this evening, so each will surely press for the win. BTS and a Cruzeiro win for me. Last 10 h2h meetings in Curtiba have seen at least two goals, with the last five and 8 from 10 going "over", at an average of 3.5 goals per game. A rare two bet game .......
"over" 2.25 goals 2.17 asian line/Sportmarket.
Cruzeiro -0.25 ball 2.19 asian line/Sportmarket.
Coritiba: Bruno , Vaná, Henrique, Ivan, Leandro Silva, Luccas Claro, Rodrigo Ramos, Walisson Maia , Welinton,Esquerdinha, Fabrício, Helder, Ícaro, Lucio Flávio, Rodolfo, Rosinei , Thiago Galhardo,Giva, Kleber, Marcos Aurélio, Negueba, Paulinho , Rafhael Lucas.
Cruzeiro: Elisson, Fábio , Rafael, Ceará, Fabiano , Mayke, Grolli, Léo, Manoel , Paulo André, Pará, Bruno Edgar, Eurico, Henrique , Willians, De Arrascaeta , Marcos Vinícius, Allano, Henrique Dourado, Joel, Leandro Damião, Marquinhos , Willian.