Preview: Sao Paulo vs. Cruzeiro – prediction, team news, lineups

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Preview: Sao Paulo vs. Cruzeiro – prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Sunday’s Brasileiro clash between Sao Paulo and Cruzeiro, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Gamweek seven in Brasileiro will see two in-form sides face off, with Sao Paulo playing host to Cruzeiro at MorumBIS on Sunday night.

Both sides come into this match off the back of midweek cup victories and will be looking to carry that momentum into the domestic league competition.

Match preview

© Reuters

After a dreadful start to the season, which included an opening-day Copa Libertadores defeat and back-to-back losses in their first two league games, Sao Paulo are now in full flight and will be looking to end the weekend in the top four.

Paulista Tricolour ended the group stage of the continental competition with a solid 2-0 win against Talleres de Cordoba on Thursday night, with Lucas Moura and Luciano finding the net at the end of each half.

That result not only saw Luis Zubeldia‘s side claim top spot in their group but also extended their current unbeaten run to 10 matches across all competitions, including eight wins and two draws.

Nine of those matches have come under the guidance of Zubeldia, who was appointed as the club’s permanent manager on April 22, meaning that the Argentine manager is yet to taste defeat since arriving in Sao Paulo.

Prior to the league break, O Clube da Fe were unbeaten in four Serie A games and earned 10 points from the last 12 on offer, beating Atletico Goianiense, Vitoria and Fluminense while drawing at home to Palmeiras in Zubeldia’s first match in charge.

Cruzeiro's Nikao celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates on May 30, 2024© Reuters

Meanwhile, after gaining promotion in 2022 and securing a spot in the Copa Sudamericana in their first campaign back in the top flight last term, Cruzeiro have certainly maintained their upward progression this season.

Raposa are currently in sixth place in the league standings and one of three teams currently tied on 10 points, three shy of league-leaders Athletico-PR, while having played one game less than all the sides above them.

Fernando Seabra‘s side is also on a five-match win streak and unbeaten in their last six games across all competitions, keeping four clean sheets in a row ahead of this weekend’s contest.

Like his counterpart in this match, Seabra has made an impressive start to his tenure with Celeste, currently boasting a record of six wins, three draws and just one loss in his first 10 games at the helm.

While the visitors will come into this match with their tails up, they will know that they are in for a stern test here, having lost to this opponent 1-0 in their last meeting and failing to win any of their last four visits to MorumBIS.

Sao Paulo Brasileiro form:

Sao Paulo form (all competitions):

Cruzeiro Brasileiro form:

Cruzeiro form (all competitions):

Team News

Flamengo's Giorgian de Arrascaeta in action with Sao Paulo's Lucas Beraldo on September 24, 2023© Reuters

Former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Lucas Moura started a second match in succession in midweek following an ankle injury and will be hoping to retain his spot in the starting 11.

Marcos Paulo has been out of action since September 2023 with a cruciate ligament injury but is reportedly closing in on a return to full training. Pablo Maia (thigh), Wellington Rato (ankle) and Rafinha (leg) are all ruled out for this match due to injury.

Arthur Gomes sustained a thigh injury in Cruzeiro’s Copa Sudamericana match against Barcelona SC a couple of weeks ago and is facing four to six more weeks on the sidelines.

Rafael Bilu injured his Achilles at the start of the month and is out until the end of June, while Juan Dinenno (groin) and Mateus Vital (shoulder) are the only other known injury doubts for this match.

Sao Paulo possible starting lineup:
Rafael; Vinicius, Arboleda, Franco, Patryck; Alisson, Bobadilla, Moura; Luciano, Silva, Juan

Cruzeiro possible starting lineup:
Paixao; William, Ivaldo, Marcelo, Marlon; L Silva, Romero, Barreal; Pereira, R Silva, Veron

SM words green background

We say: Sao Paulo 1-0 Cruzeiro

Under new management, both these sides are enjoying an excellent run of form and could end this weekend in the top four. However, Sao Paulo’s home record this season is hard to overlook, and while Cruzeiro are unbeaten in their last three away games, they were fairly unconvincing when they played Atletico Mineiro, who have been their toughest away opponent so far this term.

As a result, while we are expecting a very close contest here, we feel the hosts will be able to edge the result by a slender one-goal margin.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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