Looking to make it six consecutive wins in Group G of the Copa Sudamericana, Ceara visit the Estadio Libertadores de América to face Independiente on Thursday.
The Argentine outfit, meanwhile, have won each of their last four group outings and will be seeking to leapfrog the hosts and book their place in the knockout stages.
Independiente kept their hopes of reaching the knockout stages of the Copa Sudamericana alive when they cruised to a 4-0 win over Deportivo La Guaira last Friday.
They have now won each of their last three outings, scoring an impressive 11 goals while keeping three clean sheets in that time.
With 12 points from five games, Independiente are currently second in Group G, three points off Thursday’s visitors in first place.
Ceara, meanwhile, failed to taste victory for the fifth straight game in the Brasileiro Serie A as they were held to a goalless draw by Santos last time out.
They have now turned their attention to the Copa Sudamericana, where they have enjoyed a stellar group-stage campaign, winning each of their five games so far.
Ceara head into Thursday on a three-match unbeaten run, picking up two wins and two draws since a 1-0 defeat at Athletico Paranaense on May 8.
Independiente vs Ceara Head-To-Head
This will be the second meeting between the sides, with Ceara picking up a 2-1 victory back in April’s reverse fixture.
Independiente Form Guide: W-W-W-L-W
Ceara Form Guide: D-W-D-W-L
Independiente vs Ceara Team News
Independiente will take to the pitch without the services of David Sayago and Lucas Gonzalez Martinez, who have both been sidelined through injuries.
Injured: David Sayago, Lucas Gonzalez Martinez
Ceara’s injury list is even more hefty by comparison as the likes of Joao Paulo Moraes, Vinicius Goes, Buiú, Jael, Dentinho, Léo Rafael and Fernando Sobral continue their spells on the sidelines.
Injured: Joao Paulo Moraes, Vinicius Goes, Buiú, Jael, Dentinho, Léo Rafael, Fernando Sobral
Independiente vs Ceara Predicted XI
Independiente Predicted XI (4-4-2): Sebastián Sosa; Alex Vigo, Sergio Barreto, Juan Manuel Insaurralde, Lucas Rodríguez; Lucas Romero, Tomás Pozzo, Alan Soñora, Domingo Blanco; Damián Batallini, Julian Romero
Ceara Predicted XI (4-3-3): Richard; Nino Paraíba, Marcos Victor, Luiz Otávio, Victor Luis; Richardson, Rodrigo Lindoso, Wescley; Iury Castilho, Cléber, Dentinho
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Independiente vs Ceara Prediction
Ceara have enjoyed an outstanding run in the Copa Sudamericana and will be looking to be the only side to win all six group-stage matches. Independiente, meanwhile, head into the game needing to win by three or more goals to keep their qualification hopes alive as they sit three points off the Brazilians.
We predict a thrilling contest with the spoils being shared in this one.
Prediction: Independiente 2-2 Ceara