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Preview: Banfield vs. Union – prediction, team news, lineups

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Sports Mole previews Saturday’s Argentine Primera Division clash between Banfield and Union, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Banfield will look to continue their impressive start to the Argentine Primera Division season on Saturday, when they entertain Union.

A five-game unbeaten run has seen the hosts climb into the top four, while their visitors have also enjoyed a rise to 10th spot thanks to back-to-back wins.

Match preview

Banfield’s top-flight campaign did not get off to an ideal start, as they were beaten 2-1 by Newell’s Old Boys on the opening day, with Giuliano Galoppo‘s goal from the penalty spot coming too late to spark a turnaround, but they have quickly established a fine run of form since.

El Taladro now head into the weekend having collected 11 points from their last five outings, having put their first points on the board with a draw against Arsenal Sarandi and a win over Central Cordoba.

Diego Dabove‘s side built on that with a 1-0 win away at Tigre, thanks to Jesus Datolo‘s 82nd-minute goal, before playing out a 1-1 draw with Barracas Central and facing the tough test of a trip to Boca Juniors last time out.

Galoppo put them ahead in that game, and Ramiro Enrique added to their lead with a first-half brace to seal an impressive 3-0 victory, firing Banfield into the top four of the Argentinian top flight.

While the table will continue to change at this early stage, El Taladro will be pleased with their recent form and will aim to further establish themselves in the leading pack by adding another notch to their wins column and stretching an unbeaten run to six matches at the weekend.

They take on a Union side also hoping to build on a positive run, having turned their form around in recent weeks.

After a defeat and a draw to start the season, the visitors were able to put a first three-point haul on the board, as Jonathan Alvez and Emanuel Britez fired them to a 2-1 win away at Barracas Central, before any momentum was halted by a 5-1 thrashing at the hands of Boca Juniors.

Gustavo Munua‘s men were then able to bounce back in impressive fashion, beating Boca Juniors 2-1 away from home, before bouncing back from a Copa Sudamericana defeat to Nacional to make it two league wins on the bounce most recently.

The Tatengue hosted Lanus and cruised to a 3-0 victory to climb to 10th place, as Daniel Juarez, Imanol Machuca and Facundo Aguero all got on the scoresheet.

Now on the back of a 2-1 loss in the reverse fixture against Nacional, confirming their exit from South America’s secondary competition at the round-of-16 stage, Munua’s men will hope to rebound and continue their rise with a third straight victory in the Primera Division.

Banfield Argentine Primera Division form:

Union Argentine Primera Division form:

Union form (all competitions):

Team News

After their recent thrashing of Boca Juniors, Banfield could come into Saturday’s contest unchanged, with Dabove likely to stick with a 4-3-3 shape.

Young forward Ramiro Enrique will continue to lead the line after netting a brace last time out, taking his tally to four goals in eight appearances in all competitions this season.

He should again be flanked by Agustin Urzi and Matias Gonzalez, while Giuliano Galoppo is another attacking threat, having netted eight goals so far this term.

Union defender Emanuel Britez was sent off in their Copa Sudamericana defeat to Nacional, but that suspension will not apply to domestic games and he is available to feature as a result.

Veteran striker Jonathan Alvez will be relied upon to spearhead the attack, having scored six goals in 14 appearances across all competitions this term.

The defensive pairing of Franco Calderon and Diego Polenta is rarely altered, and they should again partner up at the heart of the back four on Saturday.

Banfield possible starting lineup:
Bologna; Coronel, Gissi, Maciel, Abecasis; Cabrera, Galoppo, Domingo; Gonzalez, Enrique, Urzi

Union possible starting lineup:
Mele; Britez, Calderon, Polenta, Corvalan; Roldan, Portillo; Vera, Luna, Zenon; Alvez

We say: Banfield 2-1 Union

Union have certainly made positive steps with back-to-back league wins in recent weeks, but they face a tough test travelling to an in-form Banfield side, and we just give the edge to the hosts.

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

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