Newell’s can win group by overcoming Racing in final match

Newell’s can win group by overcoming Racing in final match

Racing Club v Newell’s Old Boys

Copa Diego Armando Maradona
9th January 2021
🏟️ Estadio Presidente Perón (El Cilindro), Avellaneda

Some are calling it Super Saturday with progression into the final round of the cup at stake in several of the six matches taking place on 9 January, including La Lepra’s trip to Avellaneda to take on Racing Club.

It’s pretty simple: Newell’s need to win and hope that rivals Vélez don’t win their match against Godoy Cruz (which kicks-off at the same time) by scoring three more goals than Newell’s. If Vélez win and Newell’s don’t, La Lepra drop to 2nd and Vélez progress as group winners to face the winners of Group A. A draw in both games would likely see Newell’s go through if they manage to maintain their +2 goal difference advantage over Vélez.

The winners of the Fase Complementación Group A will likely be Rosario Central, setting up a much anticipated Clásico Rosarino between the two Rosario clubs if Newell’s win Group B.

While Racing will go into the game as favourites, boosted by home advantage, their participation in the Copa Diego Maradona is already over and they can’t qualify for the final stage regardless of the result against Newell’s.

The game will signal the end of Sebastián Beccacece’s reign at the Avellaneda club, having announced his impending departure recently after the club were eliminated from both the Copa Libertadores and the domestic Maradona competition.

There have been whispers that Newell’s manager Frank Kudelka could be on the shortlist to take over at Racing but with expectations huge at El Cilindro, and preparations already underway for Newell’s Copa Sudamericana campaign in 2022, it’s an unlikely move.

The outgoing Beccacece, himself famously a Newell’s fan, has drawn against La Lepra on the last two occasions he faced them as a manager: 0-0 when he was manager of Defensa y Justicia in 2018 and a 1-1 draw between Racing and Newell’s in early 2020.

Racing v Newell’s Team News

Ignacio Scocco will travel with the Newell’s squad to Avellaneda having been sidelined with a collarbone injury since the 0-2 loss to Boca Juniors at the end of November. It’s unclear whether he’s fit for match action but he has been back at training for over a week.

Young talent Nicolás Castro is also back in the squad having missed a lengthy spell recovering from COVID-19. First-choice defenders Fabricio Fontanini and Facundo Nadalín are absentees again while Julián Fernández is also out with an injury sustained in last week’s defeat to Vélez. In his absence, Juan Sforza will make his first league start for Newell’s.

Beccacece is set to make three changes from the team that drew with Central Córdoba last week: Nery Domínguez for the injured Leonardo Sigali, Iván Pillud for Alexis Soto in defence and ex-Newell’s forward Héctor Fértoli will come in for Carlos Alcaraz.

Racing XI (Probable): Arias; Pillud, N. Domínguez, Martínez, Mena, F. Domínguez, Miranda, Rojas; Melgarejo, Lisandro López, Fértoli.

Newell’s XI (Probable): Macagno, Llano, Guanini, Gentiletti, Bíttolo, Pérez, Sforza, Cacciabue, Palacios, Maxi Rodríguez, Alexís Rodríguez. 

📺 Watch Racing Club v Newell’s Old Boys on Saturday 9 January: Live on Fanatiz
⏰ Kick-off: 19.20 ARG | 22.20 UK

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