Sports Mole previews Saturday’s Brasileiro clash between Corinthians and Santos, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
The hosts will be looking to claim their fourth successive victory on home soil, while the visitors have only won one of their last five matches on the road.
Spirits are high among the Corinthians camp following their comfortable four-goal victory over Santos in the first leg of their Copa do Brasil last-16 tie on Thursday.
Strikes from Gustavo Mantuan, Giuliano and Raul Gustavo put the hosts three goals to the good at half time, before Santos midfielder Vinicius Zanocelo was shown a straight red card in the 62nd minute for an apparent elbow on Lucas Piton. The Timao then added a fourth in the 77th minute when Giuliano netted his second of the match to seal an impressive win on home soil.
Before Vitor Pereira‘s men can finish the job in the second leg next month, Corinthians have five games across all competitions to prepare for, including Saturday’s league clash with a familiar opponent.
Thursday’s success was only their fifth victory in their last 18 meetings against Santos across all tournaments, dating back to September 2017.
Corinthians currently sit second in the Brasileiro Serie A standings, and victory this weekend would see them move level on points with league leaders Palmeiras, who play against Avai on Sunday.
In stark contrast to Corinthians, Santos head coach Fabian Bustos has plenty to ponder following Thursday’s 4-0 loss, and hopes of winning their first Copa do Brasil since 2010 are seemingly all but over for this season.
The Alvinegro have now won only one of their last nine matches in all competitions, a 2-1 away win at Brasileiro Serie A basement club Juventude earlier this month.
Nevertheless, Santos remain in a decent position in the top-flight table, as they currently sit in eighth place with just three points separating them from Athletico Paranaense in third.
Santos have in fact claimed two points more than at this stage last season and are positioned four places higher, but expectations are high for the eight-time top-flight winners and both the fans and the board will expect improvements to be made in the coming months.
Santos have failed to score in four of their last five meetings against Corinthians, so the likes of Marcos Leonardo and Leo Baptistao – who have scored 10 league goals between them this term – will be relied upon to provide an attacking threat on Saturday.
Corinthians Brasileiro form:
Corinthians form (all competitions):
Santos Brasileiro form:
Santos form (all competitions):
Bustos is unlikely to make too many changes, if any, to his starting lineup despite their heavy midweek defeat, although Ricardo Goulart could potentially come into midfield for Zanocelo.
Corinthians possible starting lineup:
Cassio; Ramos, Gil, Gustavo, Santos; Queiroz, Cantillo; Adson, Augusto, Mantuan; Guedes
Santos possible starting lineup:
Paulo; Braga, Kaiky, Eduardo, Pires; Fernandez, Sandry; Baptistao, Goulart, Julio; Leonardo
We say: Corinthians 2-0 Santos
Corinthians will be regarded as the firm favourites to come out on top this weekend, considering their recent home form and comfortable win over Santos in midweek.
The visitors will be seeking revenge at the Neo Quimica Arena, but we can see the hosts enjoying more success on home soil, with a victory edging them closer to the summit.
For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.