Ecuador hosts Brazil in round 15 of the World Cup qualification. The match will be played on Friday, January 28th at Estadio Rodrigo Paz Delgado (Quito)
Gustavo Alfaro’s team is ranked 3rd in the South American qualifiers with 23 points. Ecuador has seven victories, two draws, and five defeats after 14 rounds. The Tricolors are close to returning to the World Cup, where they have not played since 2014. Alfaro’s men are ahead of the pursuers from Colombia and Peru by six points. However, Ecuadorians have a difficult calendar. After the match against Brazil, they will play against Peru away, and in March they will visit Paraguay and host Argentina. La Tri showed a good result in the last game against Chile. On November 17, 2021, they gained a 0-2 victory in Santiago. Receiving a numerical advantage in the 13th minute, Ecuadorians quickly took the lead after the goal of Pervis Estupinan, and Moises Caicedo doubled the lead at the end of the 2nd half.
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Tite’s team is ranked first in the qualifying group with 35 points after 13 matches. The Brazilians gained eleven victories and two draws. They guaranteed their participation in the World Cup in November last year. Even in case of defeat in all the remaining rounds, Tite’s players will not fall below the 3rd line in the standings. The Yellow-Greens did not experience serious resistance from their opponents in this qualification. They lost points in only two matches, including the last away game against Argentina. The match in San Juan ended without goals.
The Brazilians are deprived of tournament motivation, which gives Tite’s staff a chance to experiment with the lineup. This may weaken the attack of the pragmatic Pentacampeons and give the Ecuadorian national team a chance to score points in the upcoming home game. The Tricolors also rely on defense: in terms of the total number of goals conceded (13 in 14 rounds), Alfaro’s team is second only to Brazilians and Argentines. The bet on “Both teams to score — no” brought profit in seven of eight matches of Ecuador in the current World Cup qualification. A similar outcome was recorded in ten out of 12 matches of the Brazilians. In addition, only one of the teams scored in the last five out of six head-to-head matches.