The 2020 Campeonato Brasileiro Série A continues this weekend with Sao Paulo hosting Gremio on Sunday at 1am (UK time). Sao Paulo are chasing the
The 2020 Campeonato Brasileiro Série A continues this weekend with Sao Paulo hosting Gremio on Sunday at 1am (UK time).
Sao Paulo are chasing the title this season, currently sitting in fourth, five points behind the three teams ahead of them (Atletico Mineiro, Internacional and Flamengo). But Fernando Diniz’s side do have two games in hand on Internacional and Flamengo, so will still be confident of catching them, starting with this weekend’s game against Gremio.
While Sao Paulo are enjoying life, with just two defeats from 14 games so far (the fewest in the division) it’s been a difficult campaign for Gremio. The two-time Brasileirão winners are down in 11th as things stand having drawn eight of their 15 games so far, winning four and losing three.
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Sao Paulo & Gremio’s previous line-ups:
- Sao Paulo (vs Fortaleza): Volpi; Igor Vinicius*, Costa, B Alves, Reinaldo; Santos; Sara, D Alves, Igor Gomes, Luciano; Brenner.
- Gremio (vs Botafogo): Vanderlei; Ferraz, Rodrigues, Geromel, Barbosa; Maicon, Matheus Henrique; Alisson, Robinho, Pepe; Souza*.
Igor Vinicius is a doubt for Sao Paulo who otherwise have no fresh injury concerns following their cup game against Fortaleza in midweek. Meanwhile, Diego Souza is suspended for Gremio after his red card against Botafogo, but they should be able to call upon Walter Kannemann who has missed the past three weeks.
Players to watch:
- Sao Paulo: Dani Alves was once the best right-back in the world, but those days are long gone. We say that, not because he isn’t a good right-back anymore, but because he isn’t a right-back at all. When Alves signed for Sao Paulo last year, he made some headlines for taking the no.10 shirt, a bizarre number for a right-back as many saw him. But it turned out to be fitting, as the 37-year-old has been playing across the midfield for Sao Paulo, particularly this season. Deployed often as a defensive midfielder, Alves has also been known to play further forward in the no.10 role as he did in midweek against Fortaleza. For the visit of Gremio he is most likely going to drop back into a deeper role, but that’s where he will be key in keeping Sao Paulo’s defence tight.
- Gremio: With Diego Souza suspended, Pepe is expected to bear the brunt of the attacking work for Gremio. But they are in capable hands. The left-midfielder is already in his fifth season at Gremio having joined the club as a young player, and after impressing more often as a substitute last season, Pepe has become a starter. Ten of his 11 league appearances so far this season have come from the start, during which the Brazilian has been directly involved in eight goals, scoring five and adding three assists. Scoring twice against Botafogo in midweek, Pepe has now been directly involved in goals in each of his past four appearances. Can he make it five in a row against Sao Paulo?