Chile vs. Argentina / World Cup Qualifiers – This is one of the two derbies in this round of South American qualifiers for the World Cup. These two old rivals and finalists of the last year's edition of Copa America have not exactly started these qualifiers in the best way and both have a lot of problems. Chile has started well with two wins, and then came a draw and a heavy defeat in the last round. Argentina began with a defeat, then they made two draws and only in the last round they won. Chile is fifth on the table with two points more than the sixth ranked Argentina. The last match between these two teams was in the finals of the Copa America, when the trophy went to Chileans, but only after a penalty, because the match ended with a draw. In the past World Cup qualifiers, Argentina has achieved the victory at home with 2-1. Begins: 25.03.2016. – 00:30 CET
As the current South American champion Chile has a great obligation not to make a wrong step in these qualifications, because not going to the next World Cup would certainly be a huge failure. They started well in these qualifications, probably on the wings of success at Copa America, which they hosted. They defeated Brazil at home then also Peru away, so it seemed they are safely walking towards the World Cup in Russia, however, they made only a draw at home with Colombia, and then suffered a heavy defeat away by Uruguay with 3-0.
Therefore, they decided to change their coach Sampaoli, which was perhaps a bit surprising only half a year after their historic winning of the Copa America. Juan Antonio Pizzi is now on the bench, and it is particularly interesting before this duel that the new coach is Argentinian. It remains to be seen what he will change in the team of Chile, but it is clear that he cannot count on striker E. Vargas due to suspension, as well as midfielder Valdivia, who got suspended in the last round. All other strongest forces are there led by goalkeeper Bravo, then Vidal and A. Sanchez, as the biggest stars of the team.
Probable lineups Chile: Bravo – Isla, Medel, Jara, Mena – M. Fernandez, Vidal – Orellana, F. Gutierrez, A. Sanchez – Pinilla
After losing the finals of the Copa America, the Argentines have obviously been shaken for a long time which was felt at the start of these qualifiers when they immediately in the first round at home lost to Ecuador. This was followed by two draws, against Paraguay and Brazil, and the panic has slowly entered the team, together with a very tough away match with Columbia. But Argentina has finally started playing then and managed to win with 1-0. Therefore, they are breathing a bit easily now, but they are obviously doing better when they are not the hosts.
It is also very important to say that they were in the first four rounds deprived of services of the world's best player, Leo Messi, who is now back in the team and they are certainly a lot stronger with him. In addition, striker Higuain is in the form of his life and he is relentlessly scoring goals for Napoli, so they are certainly very powerful at the moment. They are only having minor problems in midfield, because of the injured E. Perez, while they are without Musacchi and Otamendi in defence. This should not be too much of a problem, because coach Martino has a number of great players in those lines.
Probable lineups Argentina: Romero – Mercado, Mascherano, Funes Mori, Rojo – Biglia, A. Fernandez, Banega – di Maria, Messi, Higuain
Chile vs. Argentina PICK
Chile has started good in these qualifiers, but now they are slowly falling and they have a new coach, while Argentina is apparently in the rise and they are now even stronger as a team, because Messi is coming back. It turned out that they are a better away than at home and they have an additional motive in that defeat in the finals of Copa America, so we believe that the Argentines will stay undefeated at the very least.
Pick: Asian Handicap 0 Argentina
Odds: 1.65 at bet365 (down to 1.56 can be played)
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