The national team break is here, and in South America we have a prelude to the Super Clasico. While the break may annoy some fans, we have amazing games to look forward to. Brazil travel to Colombia early tomorrow, while Argentina face Uruguay in what is one of the oldest football rivalries around. However, these games are a prelude to the biggest match of them all when Argentina travel to Rio to face Brazil next week. Meanwhile, let’s focus on the main qualification matches going down tomorrow in South America and share some predictions.

Argentina – Uruguay, Buenos Aires, 1:00 AM CET

Argentina come into this match having won all four of their qualifying matches so far, and a 14-game winning streak. In addition, the Albiceleste have no major injury concerns, and will field what is likely their best starting XI. Recent Balon d’Or winner Leo Messi will star alongside Man City’s Julian Alvarez, while their WC winning midfield will return. Enzo Fernandez, Alexis MacAllister and Rodrigo De Paul are all fit and will attempt to boss Uruguay’s stern midfield. Argentina will be under pressure to perform against one of their rivals, especially considering they are traveling to Brazil next. The Albiceleste will also want to continue on their winning streak that has lasted since their first 2022 WC game. That loss against Saudi Arabia completely changed Argentina’s demeanour, who went on to win the competition. Uruguay, on the other hand, sit joint second with Brazil (whom they beat last time out), and Venezuela, five points behind Argentina. Marcelo Bielsa has a full squad to choose from, outside of veteran striker Cavani who is injured. The midfield duo of Ugarte and Valverde will have the important job of breaking down Argentina’s wide play. Liverpool striker Darwin Nunez will battle it out with Otamendi and Romero, in what will be a physical matchup. Both sides have started their qualification campaign well, and while Argentina are certainly favourites, Uruguay have scored the most so far. A good suggestion is the double chance on Uruguay (albeit a risky one) at 2.20. A less risky option is the Under 2.5 at 1.71 – Argentina have not yet conceded in their first 4 games.

Argentina to Win – 1.63

Draw – 3.66

Uruguay to Win – 5.66

Colombia – Brazil, Barranquilla, 1:00 AM CET

Unlike Argentina, the Seleção have had a few hiccups recently after their disappointing WC Quarterfinals exit to Croatia. However, unlike their opponents Colombia, they actually made the tournament. Los Cafeteros have been struggling in past years since former top striker Radamel Falcao left the scene to the next generation. The Colombians. however, are only one point behind their opponents in the table so far. Interestingly enough, they only won their first qualifying game against neighbours Venezuela, tying the other three. They have also kept three clean sheets, only conceding two goals at home to Uruguay in October. Brazil were winless in the October break, as they drew at home to Venezuela and then lost away to Uruguay. New manager Diniz needs to hit the ground running during this break, but the Seleção have two tough matches upcoming. If they don’t get a win in either, Brazil could be sucked in a battle of 5-6 teams for those top sports that guarantee qualification. The Brazilians will be without captain Neymar for quite some time, as “O Ney” severely injured his knee ligaments last month. In addition, Arsenal’s Gabriel Jesus is also unavailable upfront, where Flamengo striker Pedro will likely start ( or young talent Endrick). The Real Madrid pair of Vinicius Jr and Rodrygo will likely start alongside him and will be key to unlocking Colombia’s defence. The Cafeteros are not missing any prominent player, as star man Luis Diaz should start upfront following his unfortunate family situation of the last weeks. Brazil are slight favourites here, but I would lean more towards a draw – perhaps a low scoring one. Vinicius needs to step up given Neymar’s absence, so playing him as anytime Goalscorer (4.00) is a risky but worthwhile bet. Brazil will struggle but may ultimately take home the three points in what is a prelude to the Super Clasico.

Colombia to Win – 3.25

Draw – 310

Brazil to Win – 2.33