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Copa Libertadores: Week Three Preview

BattagliaBoca (AP)


The third week of the Copa Libertadores group stages gets underway tonight as several Argentinian and Brazilian teams have some tricky away matches this round while reigning Libertadores champion Liga de Quito looks to snatch an away win at newcomers Sport Recife of Brazil.

Here is a rundown of this week's Copa Libertadores match-ups:


In Group 1, Brazil's Palmeiras and Chile's Colo Colo are in desperate need for three points after both teams lost their opening Libertadores match. Vanderlei Luxemburgo, the Brazilian manager, has already labeled this as the "match of the year" for his side. Palmeiras fell to Liga de Quito 3-2 in its debut while Colo Colo slipped to a 2-1 home defeat to Sport Recife.

Caracas FC of Venezuela welcomes Mexico's Chivas, which sits at the summit of Group 6 with four points. Caracas, with three points, topped Argentina's Lanus 3-1 last week and had the weekend off in the Venezuelan league to prepare for the Chivas match.

Chivas has scored 11 goals in its past two games, a 6-2 rout over Chile's Everton in Libertadores last week and a 5-0 romp over Pachuca in the Mexican championship.


Boca Juniors will look to avoid a streak of losses on Venezuelan soil by Argentine sides when they take on Deportivo Tachira in Group 2 play. But they will have to do so without their weapons in Martin Palermo and Rodrigo Palacio, both of whom reportedly stayed behind to prepare for Boca's derby vs Independiente next Sunday in the Argentine league. Will this confidence doom them?

Universidad de Chile need and should take three points at home against Bolivia's Aurora in Group 7 action. La U should have Marco Estrada and Manuel Iturra back from injuries.

In a battle of Group 1 leaders, Liga de Quito visit Sport Recife, who shocked Colo Colo in Chile and hope to do the same against the current Libertadores champs.

Bolivia's Universitario de Sucre hosts Group 5 leaders Cruzeiro of Brazil. The Brazilians were stunned by a last-minute equalizer by Deportivo Quito in their opening Libertadores match last week while La U fell in Argentina to Estudiantes de la Plata 1-0.


Group 8 leaders Libertad of Paraguay hosts a high-flying San Lorenzo side that routed River Plate 5-1 in the Argentine league over the weekend. The Paraguayans held on to a 1-0 victory over cellar dwellers San Luis of Mexico last week on a goal by Peruvian Luis Ramirez.

Meanwhile, River will look to shake off their nightmare match against San Lorenzo when they visit San Martin in Peru. The Peruvians beat River Plate in Lima last year by a 2-0 scoreline.

America de Cali, which lost a derby in Colombia over the weekend, hosts Brazil's Sao Paolo in Group 4 and hope to notch their first win in their Libertadores campaign. Sao Paolo needed a last-minute goal to tie Medellin in its tournament debut while America fell to group leaders Defensor Sporting of Uruguay 1-0.

Which games look attractive? Will the usual-powerful Argentine and Brazilian squads struggle in their away matches? Is the rest of South America closing the gap?

Share your thoughts on this week's Copa Libertadores action in the comments section below.


  1. ted tran, thats no way to think of it.

    Just because these teams dont have the same bank accounts as those in europe doesnt mean you should brush it off as inferior.

    although admittedly the low publicity or access i have to libertadores games is the main reason why i dont have much interest, i think the quality of football near the top of libertadores could be comparable to the elite 8 or final four of the UEFA cup.

    If only MLS could get some spots in Libertadores then I think a lot more fans from US would be more keen on watching.

  2. I’m not sure if they’ve just played poor competition, or if they’re just that good. But Chivas has looked like a powerhouse in the tournament thus far. Maybe they can make it a step or 2 further than their 2005 semi-final appearance.

  3. Liga’s tie vs Sport Recife will be fun, attacking game to watch. Will also give a better indication of how good LDU is, playing away and not at altitude, and after losing Guerron and BolaƱos. Thanks for the Libertadores updates, keep em coming!


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