Preview: Athletico Paranaense vs. Boca Juniors

Reuters

Two teams united over recent cup final heartbreaks against River Plate, Boca Juniors and Athletico Paranaense, will face off in Copa Libertadores on Wednesday.

Boca, defeated by their arch rivals in last year’s contentious final, travel to Brazil to take on the side Los Millonarios went on to beat in May’s Recopa Sudamericana.

The sides met earlier in the competition during the group stage with Athletico Paranaense winning the first encounter 3-0 in Brazil before Boca clinched top spot in Group G with a 2-1 reversal at La Bombonera

Gustavo Alfaro will be without Lisandro López (injured) and Carlos Izquierdoz (suspended) for the trip to Curitiba, while the biggest omission from Boca’s squad is Darío Benedetto. The Argentina striker has been heavily linked with a number of European clubs, including Marseille and Fiorentina, and is expected to complete a move imminently. 

 

Alfaro will likely line-up at the Joaquim Américo Guimarães Stadium with Esteban Andrada, Marcelo Weigandt, Paolo Goltz, Junior Alonso and Emmanuel Mas; Sebastián Villa, Nahitan Nández, Iván Marcone and Alexis Mac Allister; Mauro Zárate and Ramón Ábila.

Athletico Paranaense announced the signing of Adriano on Monday but the former Barcelona left-back, having missed the registration deadline, will not be available for Wednesday’s clash.

 

The Brazilians will also be without Thiago Heleno and Camacho, both suspended after failing drug tests, while Wellington is carrying a booking from the group stage.

Coach Tiago Nunes will look to the competition’s top goalscorer, Marco Ruben (6), to lead the line alongside fellow Argentine Lucho González.  

Watch Athletico Paranaense vs. Boca Juniors live and exclusively on beIN SPORTS and beIN SPORTS CONNECT, Wednesday at 8:30pm ET / 5:30pm PT.