Uruguay will be looking to get off to a winning start when they take on Ecuador in their opening Copa America Group C clash at the Estádio Governador Magalhães Pinto on Sunday. With Cavani and Suarez leading the line, Uruguay will fancy their chances of topping the group and challenging for a first title since 2011. Form Labs bring you their betting preview and tips for the game, while as ever we haven the value with our selection of enhanced odds.
Uruguay In Good Form
Uruguay and Ecuador kick off Group C and the former will want to pile the pressure on main group rivals Chile before La Roja take on Japan.
Their spirits will certainly have been lifted with Luis Suarez back in the fold after a quick return from injury and with 11 wins from 16 outings since the start of 2018, their form heading into the tournament is encouraging.
That’s particularly the case as of the five games they lost, four came in friendlies (two of which were against France and Brazil) while the other also came against Les Bleus in the World Cup quarterfinals.
Oscar Tabarez’s men typically come alive in major tournaments, and especially on their continent. The record 15-time Copa America champions have at a minimum reached the semi-finals in six of the past nine editions, while they travel to Brazil with a nice blend of youth and experience that should serve them well.
Ecuador Recent Form
The same can’t be said about Ecuador, who have only gone beyond the group stages once since a quarter-final appearance in 1997.
Although that did come in the centenary version in 2016, they finished second to Peru in their group as an understrength Brazil (who left the likes of Neymar, David Luiz and Thiago Silva at home with the Rio Olympics in mind) came third.
Ecuador haven’t played particularly well over the past couple of years and in fact, excluding encounters with El Salvador, Trinidad & Tobago, Jamaica, Guatemala and Panama – all of whom are far weaker than Uruguay – their record since March 2017 reads just W1-D4-L9.
That’s six defeats from nine matches up against South American sides alone, while when facing the quintet of Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Colombia and Chile, they’ve lost each of their last five since November 2016.
Uruguay v Ecuador Betting Tips
Uruguay haven’t enjoyed the best of results against Ecuador in head-to-heads, only winning two of seven meetings since 2005 (W2-D3-L2), with both sides registering 2-1 victories in their home games during the last round of World Cup qualifiers.
In fact, none of the last 10 meetings between these two have been settled one way or the other by more than a single goal.
However, Uruguay are heavy favourites with good reason in the environment of tournament football and given five of Ecuador’s last six defeats have come by the solitary strike, while the Uruguayans registered slim one goal margin victories in their opening two games at the World Cup last summer against Egypt and Saudi Arabia, a narrow victory is likely to be on the cards.
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*odds subject to change.