Preview: Godoy Cruz vs. Boca Juniors – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday’s Argentine Primera Division clash between Godoy Cruz and Boca Juniors, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Godoy Cruz and Boca Juniors are separated by a solitary point in the Argentine Primera Division ahead of their clash at the Estadio Malvinas Argentinas on Thursday.

The hosts suffered a 2-1 defeat to Atletico Tucuman last time out, while the visitors were held to a 1-1 draw by Lanus, despite dominating proceedings at La Bombonera.

Match preview

Boca Juniors coach Jorge Almiron during the match on May 26, 2023© Reuters

Although Godoy Cruz racked up 16 shots while enjoying the lion’s share of possession last time out, Atletico Tucuman stood firm and claimed all three points on home soil, with Julian Eseiza‘s 88th-minute strike proving to be nothing more than a consolation goal.

El Tomba have now lost two of their previous three Primera Division outings, with a 2-0 defeat at Newell’s Old Boys preceding last week’s failure at the Estadio Jose Fierro.

After starting the season in indifferent form – recording four wins and five draws across their opening nine league matches – Godoy Cruz enjoyed an eight-game unbeaten streak between April and May, picking up three wins and five draws along the way.

Since then, however, Sergio Gomez‘s men have taken three points from a possible nine, suffering back-to-back away defeats while claiming a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Independiente on home soil.

The triumph against Independiente means that Godoy Cruz have won five of their nine home league games this season, suffering a solitary defeat in the process, so the Mendoza outfit will be hopeful of picking up another positive result at the Estadio Malvinas Argentinas.

Boca Juniors players applaud fans after the match on May 26, 2023© Reuters

Boca Juniors, meanwhile, required an 88th-minute goal from Dario Benedetto to snatch a 1-1 draw against Lanus last weekend, despite registering 13 shots while seeing more than 70% of the ball on home soil.

In truth, that result sums up Boca’s season, as the 2022 Primera Division champions have flattered to deceive this year, recording eight wins, four draws and eight losses in the league.

Having taken 28 points from a possible 60, the Buenos Aires giants already find themselves 19 points behind arch-rivals River Plate, who sit seven points clear at the summit of the standings after winning 15 of their 20 matches.

That said, Boca Juniors have upped their game in recent weeks, winning four of their last seven league outings, while Jorge Almiron‘s men have also won three of their previous four Copa Libertadores clashes, punching their ticket to the knockout phase in the process.

It is worth noting, however, that Boca have struggled on the road this year, winning just one of their previous five Primera Division away outings while losing five of their nine league games on the road in 2023.

Godoy Cruz Argentine Primera Division form:

Boca Juniors Argentine Primera Division form:

Boca Juniors form (all competitions):

Team News

Boca Juniors' Exequiel Zeballos reacts on April 26, 2022© Reuters

Godoy Cruz are still without long-term injury absentee Gianluca Ferrari, who has not featured since February due to a ruptured cruciate ligament.

With four goals and one assist to his name, top scorer Tadeo Allende will continue to lead the line for the hosts, with Sergio Gomez likely to deploy a 4-2-3-1 formation.

Tomas Conechny, Hernan Lopez and Nicolas Fernandez are expected to operate behind the lone striker, while Cristian Nunez and Gonzalo Abrego look set to occupy the defensive midfield roles.

On the flip side, Boca Juniors’ lengthy injury list contains Exequiel Zeballos, Luca Langoni, Miguel Merentiel, Frank Fabra, Luis Advincula and Norberto Briasco.

Former Manchester United defender Marcos Rojo also remains sidelined due to a muscle injury, with the 33-year-old’s last appearance coming back in October 2022.

Jorge Almiron will likely continue with his favoured 4-5-1 formation, meaning that Dario Benedetto – who has bagged three goals and three assists this year – will lead the line.

Godoy Cruz possible starting lineup:
Rodriguez; Barrios, Salvareschi, Rasmussen, Meli; Abrego, Nunez; Fernandez, Lopez, Conechny; Allende

Boca Juniors possible starting lineup:
Garcia; Roncaglia, Valdez, Valentini, Barco; Fernandez, Medina, Fernandez, Romero, Ramirez; Benedetto

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We say: Godoy Cruz 2-1 Boca Juniors

Having avoided defeat in each of their last seven home games – picking up four wins and three draws along the way – Godoy Cruz look set to notch another home victory at the expense of Boca Juniors, who have lost five of their nine away league outings this year.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

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