It is a top versus bottom fixture in CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying on Thursday when Brazil take on Venezuela on matchday 10.

Brazil lead CONMEBOL World Cup standings with 24 points from 24 points possible. The Brazilians have not dropped points, but are coming off of the debacle that was their game against Argentina on matchday 9. The fixture will be made up later on during qualifying.

Venezuela are at the very bottom of CONMEBOL World Cup standings. Manager Giovanni Savarese’s team has taken a mere four points from 27 points possible in qualifying. Venezuela are nine points off of the intercontinental playoff place.

La Vinotinto are unlikely to qualify for the World Cup, but could throw a spanner in the works for Brazil. A loss to Venezuela could allow Argentina to inch closer in the standings to top CONMEBOL.

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Brazil and Venezuela have played 28 times over the years dating back to 1959. The Brazilians have lost a mere two times to Venezuela in those 28 meetings. La Vintotinto’s last win against Brazil came in 2008.

Tito’s team has lost just once in their last 15 matches. Their only loss this year came against Argentina in the Copa America 2021 final.

Brazil and Venezuela met in the Copa America tournament during the summer. The Selecao claimed a 3-0 win thanks to goals from Marquinhos, Neymar, and Gabriel.

Venezuela are without two key players going into the game. Strikers Salomon Rondon has remained in England with club team Everton. Meanwhile, Atlanta United striker Josef Martinez was not selected following a poor season playing in North America.

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Savarese has also omitted veterans Yangel Herrera, Romulo Otero, and Jhon Murillo. Jefferson Savarino and Mikel Villanueva are also out of the squad due to injury.

Brazil manager Tite has the national team’s Premier League players available for this international break. Neither Liverpool’s Roberto Firmino nor Everton’s Richarlison have been included with the squad due to injuries.

Atletico Madrid’s Matheus Cunha has withdrawn from the squad due to a thigh injury. PSG’s Neymar is suspended due to an accumulation of yellow cards. Ajax’s Antony and Leeds United’s Raphinha have been included and are seeking their first caps.

Brazil rebounded from their Copa America final loss to Argentina with wins in September against Chile and Peru. Both games ended in wins to nil with under 2.5 goals scored.

The Selecao should claim another win to nil with under 2.5 goals scored. Brazil have won 23 times in 28 matches all time versus Venezuela. They should win for a 24th time and continue the march toward Qatar 2022.

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