Pick Palmeiras to Defend Copa Libertadores Crown

Jane Barrett
By , Updated on: May 18, 2023 08:00 PM
Pick Palmeiras to Defend Copa Libertadores Crown

Palmeiras has made a solid start to the defense of its Copa Libertadores crown and looks one of the best picks in the tournament futures market.

Who do Bettors Favor?

A check of the odds at the best online sportsbooks it’s clear that bettors are favoring the leading two Brazilian teams. Palmeiras is priced at +375 and Flamengo at +450, with another Brazilian team, Fluminese, in third place. Next in the betting is River Plate, rated at around +800 ahead of Boca Juniors. Atletico Mineiro and Athletico Paranaense are available at +1600.

Copa Libertadores WinnerBetOnline
River Plate+800
Boca Juniors+1200
A Mineiro+1600
A Paranaense+1600

Copa Libertadores Betting Briefing

The Copa Libertadores is the top club soccer tournament in South America, organised by CONMEBOL, the South American soccer organisation. First held in 1960, the tournament was expanded in 2000 to include 32 teams from across the South American nations.

Twenty-five clubs have won the competition since its inception, with Independiente of Argentina owning the record with seven victories. Argentine clubs have the most victories, with 25, while Brazil has generated the biggest range of champions.

The Group Stage of the competition runs from 4 April to 29 June and consists of eight groups of four teams. At the halfway point, each team in each of the eight groups has played each other once; this process will be reiterated to choose the 16 teams that advance to the knockout phase. This year's championship match will be played at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro.

The Copa Libertadores Favorites

Palmeiras and Flamengo have each won the Copa Libertadores three times and the two clubs have dominated the competition in the last four years, so it is not surprising to see both teams regarded as favorites at the top of this year's betting odds.

They have gotten off to divergent starts in the 2023 Brazilian Campeonato, however. The defending champion, Palmeiras, is in second place and undefeated, whereas Flamengo has lost three out of its six league games. This inconsistency has shown itself in Flamengo's Group A games thus far. It defeated the underdog Nublense, but fell to Aucas, the second-ranked team in Ecuador, and was unable to hold on against Racing, resulting in a point.

Surprisingly, Palmeiras has also had trouble with consistency and is currently in second place in its Group after losing its first match to Bolivar and then defeating Barcelona and Cerro Porteno. The two teams should be able to advance from their respective Groups, but Palmeiras appears more settled than Flamengo, which is still adjusting to Jorge Sampaoli's style of play, so the defending champion offers better value.

Copa Contenders

Fluminese's record in this competition is surprisingly poor. Ten Brazilian teams have won it, yet Fluminese's best performance was a final appearance in 2008.

It has enjoyed the best possible beginning to the competition this year, winning each of its Group games thus far, including a stunning 5-1 home victory over Argentine powerhouses River Plate. Last season, Fernando Diniz led Fluminese to a strong third-place finish in the Campeonato, and this may be a team to back in the futures market.

Fluminese is properly regarded as a leading contender after it destroyed River Plate. However, for the Argentinian side, that result brought up significant worries, and although the club is going well in the Argentinian Primera Division, the post-Marcelo Gallardo era in continental football has been a disappointment, as River Plate has lost two of its three games and is in danger of elimination.

Boca Juniors is looking at the opposite problem. Under new manager Jorge Almiron, the team continues to struggle in the Primera Division, though it is still early in his tenure, and it has won two of its first three games in the Copa Libertadores. Still, it has not yet demonstrated the ability to beat the very best Brazilian teams.

Betting Underdogs for Copa Glory

If you're looking for an outsider bet in the Copa Libertadores Futures betting market, keep in mind that 16 of the last 18 competitions have been won by a team from Brazil or Argentina. In total, teams from these two countries have won 47 titles, accounting for 75 percent of all winners.

Even when searching for underdog wagers, it is best to focus on these nations, and Athletico Paranaense appears to be a solid option. It's off to a strong start in the Campeonato and leads its Copa Libertadores group. Early indications from new manager Paulo Turra are encouraging, and his team may have some value in the futures market.

”Athletico To win Copa Libertadores

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Meet the author

Jane Barrett

With over 15 years of experience, Jane Barrett is a respected journalist in the sports betting industry. Jane has lent her expertise to major outlets including Betfair, ESPN, and Sporting Life during her prolific career. As a leading writer covering the sports bettin...

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