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2018 World Cup Qualifiers: Venezuela vs Chile preview

Kick-off:  Wednesday, 30 March @00:30 GMT

Venue: Estadio Rafael Agustin Tovar (Barinas)

Live Stream: fuboTV (US), bet365 (non-US)

Head to head record

Chile vs Venezuela 5-0 (2014 Friendly International)
Chile vs Venezuela 3-0 (2014 World Cup qualifiers)
Venezuela vs Chile 0-2 (2014 World Cup qualifiers)
Chile vs Venezuela 1-2 (2011 Copa America)
Chile vs Venezuela 0-0 (2010 Friendly International)

Venezuela vs Chile prediction

Following back-to-back defeats to the likes of Uruguay and Argentina, Copa America title holders Chile have a chance to return to winning ways in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers as they take on Venezuela at Estadio Rafael Agustin Tovar in Barinas.

No Salomon Rondon

Thanks to a 2-2 draw with Peru at Estadio Nacional de Lima Chile put an end to their four-game losing run in the World Cup qualifiers. Ricardo Gareca’s team showed character in the clash against Peru and they will be looking to build on the display when they take on Chile on Wednesday. This has to go down as a must win game for Venezuela as they have collected no more than one point from possible 15 in the process, but the match against Alexis Sanchez and Co. will be anything but a walk in the park for the hosts. Los Llaneros are likely to go all guns blazing on La Roja and the fact that the Venezuelans scored at least one goal in each of their previous four qualifying games is giving the fans a reason for optimism ahead of the visit of Chile.

The likes of Luis Manuel Seijas, Roberto Rosales and Jose Manuel Velazquez all return to contention after missing the Peru game through suspension, while key attacker Salomon Rondon is banned. Richard Blanco is widely expected to replace the WBA attacker in the starting line-up.

Must-win game?

Chile kicked off their World Cup qualifying campaign with a brilliant 2-0 victory over South American giants Brazil and, to make things even better for the fans, La Roja recorded a 4-3 victory over Peru in their second group game. However, the Copa America champions then suffered a dip in form as they picked up no more than one point from previous three qualifying matches. It seems as if coach Jorge Sampaoli is going to be sorely missed in the World Cup qualifying campaign and, no doubt, Spanish tactician Pizzi feels pressure following back-to-back defeats to the likes of Uruguay and Argentina. Alexis Sanchez does not seem to be at the top of his game, but the Arsenal ace is likely to pose a big threat for the Venezuela defenders in Wednesday’s qualifier. Anyhow, you should have in mind that Pizzi has a number of selection worries ahead of the trip to Barinas.

The likes of Eduardo Vargas remain on the sidelines through suspension, while Marcelo Diaz and Matias Fernandez have joined Charles Aranguiz in the recovery room. Goalkeeper Claudio Bravo is yet another absentee in the away side, while Arturo Vidal returns to contention.

Quick Facts

  • Over 3.5 goals were scored in four of Venezuela’s last five games
  • Venezuela scored 2+ goals in four of their previous five matches
  • Ten goals were netted in Chile’s previous two away games
  • La Roja are after their fourth consecutive win over Venezuela
  • Pizzi’s team scored 10 goals in last three meetings with los Llaneros

Venezuela vs Chile betting tip

Venezuela have been struggling at the back in the 2018 World Cup qualifiers and seeing that Chile coach Pizzi welcomes Bayern Munich midfielder Arturo Vidal back to the squad, I believe that there is a big value in betting on La Roja this time out. Chile are eager to return to winning ways and seeing that Venezuela key attacker Salomon Rondon misses the match, away win should be considered.

Tip: Chile to win

Odds: 1.90 (5/10) @Unibet

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