Aucas and Nacional Asuncion get their quest for a place in the Copa Libertadores underway when they square off in the first leg of the qualifiers on Friday.
The Paraguayan outfit have stumbled into the new year and will journey to the Estadio Gonzalo Pozo Ripalda looking to end their six-game winless run across all competitions.
Aucas will take to the pitch for the first time since December 4, when they concluded the Ecuadorian LigaPro second-round campaign with a 2-1 win over Orense at the Estadio 9 de Mayo.
The victory over Orense capped off a solid end to the campaign for Gerardo Espinoza’s side, who went unbeaten in their final nine matches, picking up six wins and three draws.
This fine run of results saw Aucas finish third in the LigaPro Second Round standings after picking up 25 points from their 15 matches.
Nacional Asuncion, on the other hand, were denied their first win of the new Paraguayan Division Profesional campaign as they suffered a 4-1 defeat against Guarani last Friday.
Juan Pablo Pumpido’s men have now gone six consecutive games without a win across all competitions, a run which sees them occupy 14th place in the league standings.
While Nacional will look to stop the rot this weekend, results on their travels offer little optimism as they have failed to win seven of their last eight away matches in all competitions.
Aucas vs Nacional Asuncion Head-To-Head and Key Numbers
- This will be the first meeting between Aucas and Nacional Asuncion, who will both be looking to begin their rivalry on a winning note.
- Nacional are currently on a six-game winless run, losing twice and picking up four draws since a penalty-shootout victory over Guaraní on November 19.
- Aucas are unbeaten in their last nine matches across all competitions, stretching back to a 4-2 loss against Tecnico back in September.
- Nacional have won just one of their last eight matches while losing twice and picking up five draws since October.
Aucas vs Nacional Asuncion Prediction
Nacional Asuncion have struggled to get going since the turn of the year and will be looking to find their feet this weekend. However, Aucas’ home advantage gives them a slight edge here and we fancy the Ecuadorian outfit to come away with a first-leg victory.
Prediction: Aucas 3-1 Nacional Asuncion
Aucas vs Nacional Asuncion Betting Tips
Tip 1: Result – Aucas to win
Tip 2: First to score – Aucas (The visitors have conceded the opening goal in six of their last eight games)
Tip 3: Over 10.5 corners – No (There have been fewer than 11 corner kicks in nine of Aucas’ last 10 matches)