Earlier this week, Baraquenos shut out Belgrano 2-0, moving to within three points of Argentinos in the table, with the latter settling for a 0-0 draw with Instituto.
Since taking charge at Barracas in the middle of April, Sergio Rondina has traditionally seen two different teams show up, one which has at times looked impenetrable defensively, while the other have been lacking that finishing touch in the attacking third.
Guapo have collected seven clean sheets in this competition since the middle of April when they drew Velez Sarsfield 0-0, but have also failed to score on four occasions over that stretch.
On Monday, they can do something that they have not done since returning to the top-flight last season, win three straight domestic affairs.
Unbeaten in their previous six home contests in all competitions should have them feeling pretty confident heading into this match, especially given the calibre of teams they have earned points against during this run, with wins over River Plate (2-1) and San Lorenzo (1-0) and coming back from two goals down to draw Talleres Cordoba (2-2).
This group have been resilient throughout the 2023 Primera campaign, coming back to earn a point on five occasions after conceding the first goal in a game.
They have been particularly dangerous this season on set pieces as they have some physical attacking players capable of winning their share of aerial duels and making those chances count.
Preview: Barracas Central vs. Argentinos Jrs – prediction, team news, lineups
Argentinos will play three of their next four matches in all competitions on the road, with a chance on Monday to win a first away contest in this competition since matchday 20 (1-0 win over Velez Sarsfield).
Four matches remain before the opening phase of this competition concludes, and Gabriel Milito has his side positioned to match or beat their points total from the second round of last season.
To do that, they will have to claim maximum points in three of their next four games, as they currently have 33 points after claiming 42 to end the previous campaign.
Milito has built a solid defensive unit who are tied for fourth in goals conceded this season (19), with five clean sheets coming away from home.
This upcoming fixture will only be the second time this team have ever met Barracas in the top flight, and the last time they faced them, it turned out pretty well for El Bicho, as they silenced the home crowd with an opening goal on nine minutes before stunning them with two in the final 10 minutes to win 3-1.
While Barracas have made their share of impressive comebacks this season, Argentinos have been particularly strong at protecting leads, losing only once when scoring the opening goal domestically this year but winning every other time.
Without a goal in back-to-back domestic outings, El Bicho are in danger of going goalless in three consecutive league fixtures for the first time since last season, when they failed to do that a trio of times from late August to early September.
Barracas Central Argentine Primera Division form:
Argentinos Juniors Argentine Primera Division form:
Argentinos Juniors form (all competitions):
We say: Barracas Central 2-1 Argentinos Juniors
The physical demands of the domestic campaign and the Copa Libertadores appear to be taking a toll on Argentinos, who have lacked imagination and quality in recent games.