Palmeiras – Athletico Paranaense: Scolari’s Side Extend Unbeaten Run Despite Missed Chances (1-0)
After Palmeiras were able to neutralize Paranaense’s early possession - by limiting the options forward for playmaker Guimarães - a flurry of chances either way opened up the game. One open goal miss and twenty-nine Paranaense fouls later, the winner was found; courtesy of substitute Raphael Vega’s 80th minute penalty.
Tactical analysis and match report by Tom Quartly.
Palmeiras came into this match off the back of a seemingly comfortable win against Chapecoense; Luiz Felipe Scolari’s sturdy 4-2-3-1 shape has bared serious fruition this season, as the table-toppers went into their match against Athletico Paranaense with five wins in the last five games. Wingers Dudu and Zé Rafael had nine goal contributions in the Série A this season. Combined with the solid defensive organization, the two attackers have been foundational in Palmeiras’ early Brasileiro dominance.
Their opponents Paranaense came into the game following a convincing 3-0 win against Fluminense in their last Série A outing. For this one, manager Tiago Nunes made multiple alterations, including a change in formation. Usually operating in a 4-2-3-1 shape, Nunes went for a 4-1-4-1 formation here, with Wellington operating as the sole defensive midfielder. This was most likely done in an effort to combat Palmeiras’ number ten Lucas Lima.
Paranaense’s opening possession breaks way to early chances
For the most part, the opening moments were characterized by Paranaense’s defenders and midfielders in possession, passing the ball around, unable to get it into the final third. The one-third of the pitch that is closest to the . . .