Serie A Predictions for Round 18
Even though many other football leagues across the world are taking a break because of international matches, that is not the case with Brazilian Serie A. The big battle between Flamengo and Santos for the top position continues during the weekend, with Corinthians, Sao Paulo and Palmeiras waiting for the opportunity to join the title race as well. There are plenty of interesting clashes scheduled for Saturday & Sunday. A lot of attention will be focused on the duel between Internacional and Sao Paulo, while betting opportunities await in encounters between Avai v Flamengo, and Goias v Palmeiras.
Avai v Flamengo – Visitors are massive favorites
Avai are currently the last placed team on the table, managing to collect only ten points from the opening 17 games. The team is struggling really hard when it comes to efficiency (bagged only nine goals), which is the second-worst record in the league. They were successful in causing a big upset in the previous round, on Monday night to be precise. Avai was given a very low chance to avoid defeat on the road against Fluminense, but they have returned home with three points, winning the match 1-0! Joao Paulo has scored the only goal in the match from a penalty spot, just a couple of minutes away from the final whistle. That was the first victory away from home for Avai in this campaign – the current record is one win, one draw, and seven losses. The total goal difference is 4-14. When it comes to home matches, they are the only squad in the league without one single victory. Avai are the kings of draws – six out of eight games at Estadio Aderbal Ramos da Silva ended without a winner. How are they going to deal with the current table leaders?
The current odds on Flamengo to win are at very low 1.30. Jorge Jesus’ squad is having certain troubles to collect points on the road. Their current win rate is at 33%, which is why we don’t think those odds represent any value. Flamengo has successfully recovered from the surprising 3-0 loss to Bahia in early August. Since then they have connected four straight victories against Gremio, Vasco Da Gama, Ceara, and Palmeiras. The total goal difference from those clashes is 13-2! Impressive. 23-years old striker Gabriel Barbosa has been playing out of his mind lately, managing to score 14 goals in 13 appearances so far. If you are looking for some solid anytime goal scorers tip, he is definitely a top choice.
Interestingly, Flamengo is not having a good record against Avai when it comes to the most recent head to head duels. They earned only one victory in the last five meetings. Both duels from the previous campaign have ended without a winner 1-1 FT. The current odds on a draw are at 5.00 (huge value in our opinion).
Santos v Atletico Paranaense – Hosts aiming for second consecutive win
August has been the very turbulent month for Santos and their fans. The big advantage they had over Flamengo has literally melted after three horrible performances. The squad has finally ended the winless streak last Sunday by beating Chapecoense on the road. Before that, Santos has lost consecutively to Sao Paulo 3-2 and Cruzeiro 2-0, while home encounter against Fortaleza ended without a winner 3-3 FT. They are now tied with Flamengo at the top of the table, so it’s fair to say the upcoming match against Atletico Paranaense has big importance, mostly for squad’s morale and spirits.
Santos has the second most efficient stats in the league, scoring 29 times in 17 appearances. Eduardo Sasha is sitting at top of their team list with eight goals. His current form is also decent – he appeared on the score sheet in three out of the last five games.
Atletico Paranaense is currently sitting in the 9th position with 25 points. They definitely have the quality to end in top eight, especially if the results away from home become slightly better. This squad is performing way better in front of the home crowd (six wins in eight matches). Four out of the last five games as visitors have ended with defeats. We are predicting that trend to continue.
Besides home win for Santos, and a draw in the match between Avai and Flamengo, we have a couple of other betting recommendations. Backing both teams to score in Goias v Palmeiras at 2.10 seems like a good idea too, while Corinthians shouldn’t have a lot of troubles to beat Ceara at home.