Flamengo vs Internacional for the Copa Libertadores match on Thursday at Jornalista Mário Filho Stadium.
The confrontation on the quarter-finals of the Copa Libertadores played on Thursday, shows the Flamengo and Internacional battling at Maracanã. The hosts will want to grab a lead to take to the second leg.
With the most disputed cast and full of big names, Flamengo comes to Libertadores among the favourites to win it and, so far, met all expectations.
The team were first in a group that had San Jose, Penarol and LDU Quito, before staging an excellent return in the round of 16 to beat Emelec on penalties after a 2-2 draw.
Now, facing a national rival they know well, Jorge Jesus’s men know that they will have to be at their best against International and reach the semifinals.
Securing a win on Thursday is of great importance considering how strong Inter are as a host, but that’s something Flamengo can be sure to do with their own incredibly strong home record, 13 unbeaten games. 11 of which were victories
Meanwhile, International has been unlucky and unable to lift the Libertadores title, and this remains the case. The team does not have the same financial capacity as other teams in the competition, but so far looked strong, going through a group that had River Plate, Alianza Lima and Palestino, before defeating the Uruguayan National in the last round.
With a talented squad that has good quality in all areas, Inter will certainly not be apprehensive when reaching the match but knows that this first leg is difficult.
The team is much more impressive when they play as a host, and after losing 4 of their last 7 away games, the whole focus is just to make sure they stay level at the end of Thursday.
Ultimately, this is probably the most interesting of the four Libertadores quarter-finals that will be played and deciding on a winner seems complicated.
Who best uses their home advantage is likely to be the deciding factor, with both teams immensely impressive in their own way, but a little inconsistent when travelling away.
As such, favouritism is very much about Flamengo in this first match and, besides, they scored an incredible average of 2.69 goals per game in their run of 13 consecutive home wins and winning their last two home games against Inter, they must win the game with goals.
The teams of JJ are also very offensive, playing attacking football with many opportunities, as we have seen in the last Flamengo games, so I believe the match has goals.
My bet is over 1.5 goals.