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Jul 1, 2021 at 1.30am UK
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Preview: Juventude vs. Gremio - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Juventude vs. Gremio - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Thursday's Brasileiro clash between Juventude and Gremio, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

A key game takes place at the bottom of the Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A on Thursday, as Juventude host basement side Gremio.

The visitors currently sit at the foot of the division with just two points from their opening five games, while they would move within four points of their opponents with a win while keeping two games in hand.

Match preview

Thursday's hosts find themselves in a solid run of form in the Brazilian top flight, having collected seven points from their last three outings.

That run started with their first victory of the season in their fifth match, as a Matheus Peixoto goal in the final 10 minutes made the difference in a 1-0 win over Sport Recife.

Marquinhos Santos's side then picked up a point in a 1-1 draw away against America Mineiro, in what will have been a much more disappointing result for Santos and his side.

Peixoto put them ahead from the penalty spot in the first half, and Juventude looked set to cruise home when their opponents were reduced to 10 men in the 74th minute as centre-back Ricardo Silva was sent off, but the hosts would go on to snatch a point when Juninho converted a penalty in the 85th minute.

They did quickly bounce back with another win last time out, though, as Peixoto was again on the scoresheet in an impressive 1-0 home win over Flamengo.

Santos's men will now see Thursday at a good opportunity to make it three wins from four games against a struggling Gremio side, as they look to continue their climb up the table, having already risen to 14th spot after a difficult start to the season.

Gremio come into this game having made a poor start to the season, collecting just two points from their opening five league games, suffering defeats to Ceara, Athletico Paranaense and Sport Recife at the start of the season.

Those two points did come in the last two matches though, firstly drawing 2-2 with Santos despite looking on track to pick up a crucial win.

Diego Souza put Tiago Nunes's side ahead and Matheus Henrique restored the one-goal lead on the stroke of half time after Marcos Guilherme's equaliser, ensuring Gremio remained in the driving seat, but a Marinho goal for Santos in the final 15 minutes would force Nunes's men to share the points.

They then did well to earn a point in a goalless draw with fifth-placed Fortaleza last time out, as Gremio stood strong despite playing with 10 men for 30 minutes after Walter Kannemann's red card on the hour mark.

Having seen a slight improvement in their performances in recent weeks, Nunes's men will be hopeful to go one better on Thursday and record their first win of the season at the sixth time of asking to potentially climb off the foot of the table.

Juventude Brasileiro form:
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • D
  • W

Gremio Brasileiro form:
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • D
  • D

Gremio form (all competitions):
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • D
  • D

Team News

The Juventude line will be led by Matheus Peixoto, who has netted in each of the last three games to help his side to seven points in that time, scoring all three of their goals in those matches.

He should be supported by the wide threat of Paulinho and Wescley in a front three.

Meanwhile, the back four of Michel, Vitor Mendes, Rafael Forster and William Matheus could remain unchanged after a solid clean sheet last time out.

Gremio come into the game without centre-back Walter Kannemann, who will serve a one-game suspension after his red card in the draw with Fortaleza.

Nunes will have wanted to keep his back four unchanged if it was not for that suspension after an impressive clean sheet against the league's fifth-placed side, but Paulo Miranda may come in to start alongside Pedro Geromel.

They also have an unfortunate injury list to deal with, as Elias Manoel, Leo Gomes, Maicon and Alisson will all remain out of contention.

Winger Douglas Costa should play a key role going forward, having recently joined on loan from Juventus after an impressive career in Europe.

Juventude possible starting lineup:
Carne; Michel, Mendes, Forster, Matheus; Castilho, Elton, Jesus; Wescley, Peixoto, Paulinho

Gremio possible starting lineup:
Chapeco; Rafinha, Geromel, Miranda, Goiano; Santos, Bobsin, Henrique; Costa, Souza, Ferreira

We say: Juventude 2-1 Gremio

While Gremio have started to look more positive in the last two games and will be desperate to put their first win of the season on the board, Juventude should have enough to stretch their good run of form with a win.

Santos's side have picked up two crucial wins in the last three games to lift themselves out of the bottom four, and with the clinical form of Peixoto, they should get past the basement side on Thursday.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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Brasileiro Table
1Atletico Mineiro19133329131642
10Atletico GoianienseAtletico GO196851618-226
11Athletico ParanaenseAthletico PR197392323024
16Sao Paulo195771622-622
17America MineiroAmerica Mineiro195681722-521
19Sport RecifeSport20389815-717
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