Matchweek 4, Copa Libertadores matches to watch
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We're at the midpoint of the Group Stage of the 2020 Copa Libertadores and each group is starting to take shape. The top in the groups go through to the knockout round, 3rd place goes into the Copa Sudamericana, and the last place team goes home. GROUP A The bottom two teams in the group host matches this week as Barcelona hosts a reeling Flamengo side while leaders Independiente del Valle travel to Colombia to face Junior. Flamengo did not have a league match this weekend and will be trying to wash the taste of 7 goals conceded and none scored in their last two matches in all competitions. If Barcelona is going to be in a position to continue in South American play this year, they have to get a win at home. Junior will be trying to build on a 2-1 win in Ecuador last week, along with a win in their return to domestic league play over the weekend.
GROUP B Palmeiras is in the driver's seat here, although they face a tricky trip to Paraguay to face Guaraní on Wednesday night. While the top two face off this week, that means that last placed Tigre will be hosting Bolívar. A Bolívar win combined with a Guaraní loss could put second place in play. GROUP C
Another group where the top two face off in Matchday 4 as Athletico Paranaense hosts Colo-Colo. Both are coming off of come-from-behind victories last week and will be looking to continue the momentum. Peñarol sits at the bottom of the table, but they did pick up a win in league play over the weekend and will try to build on that in a trip to Bolivia to face Jorge Wilstermann.
Both matches in this group take place tomorrow night at 8:30. Binacional tries to avenge the 8-0 demolition job River Plate conducted back in March and group leaders LDU Quito hosts São Paulo. Binacional won in league play on Friday, while River will try to build off a strong draw in Brazil last week. LDU Quito had a disappointing 1-1 draw against Emelec on the weekend, but maintained their top spot in Ecuador's Serie A. São Paulo will be trying not to look ahead to their showdown with Internacional on Saturday as they travel to Ecuador.
Speaking of Internacional, they lead Group E and will be hosting Brazilian rivals Grêmio on Wednesday night. Grêmio drew 1-1 in league play yesterday and are currently in 12th place. Inter had a surprising loss in league play over the weekend and fell into second place in the table. Also at 8:30 on Wednesday night, América de Cali will host Universidad Católica. Los Diablos Rojos won their return to league play over the weekend after the wild 4-3 loss to Internacional on Matchday 3. Universidad Católica will be trying to build on the 2-0 win over Grêmio last week.
Nacional went to Argentina to defeat Racing last week to maintain their perfect record in the competition. They will travel to Venezuela to face one of last week's surprises in Estudiantes de Mérida. That win put Estudiantes in shouting distance of Racing. La Academia travels to Peru to face the disappointing Alianza Lima.
Group leaders Santos head to Ecuador to face Delfín. It's been a disappointing year for Delfín, but they will have some momentum here after a 4-1 win in league play over Mushuc Runa yesterday. Defensa y Justicia defeated them 3-0 last week and will be looking to build on that as they host Olimpia on Wednesday at 6:15. This match will go a long way to deciding who advances to the knockout round.
Independiente Medellin is surprisingly at the bottom of the group, and it gets no easier for them with group leaders Boca Juniors coming to town on Thursday. 2nd place surprise Libertad travels to Venezuela to face even bigger surprise Caracas FC. Can Caracas build on their big win in Colombia last week?