Seeking to avoid a fourth successive Brasileiro defeat, reigning champions Palmeiras play host to Atletico Mineiro at Allianz Parque on Thursday.
The visitors are also looking to bounce back from defeat last time out as they endeavour win their first encounter with Palmeiras since August 2021.
Palmeiras’ hopes of retaining their Brasileiro title have taken a significant blow in recent weeks as they have dropped 11 points from their last 15 available, losing each of their last three league games against Gremio, Bragantino and Santos.
Defeats to top-four rivals Gremio and Bragantino will have been tough to take for Abel Ferreira’s side, and a 2-1 home loss to a struggling Santos outfit just over a week ago rubbed salt into their wounds; a heartbreaking defeat on penalties to Boca Juniors in the Copa Libertadores semi-finals also took place during this run.
The Big Green are clinging on to fourth spot only by goal difference and defeat on Thursday could see them drop down to eighth if other results go against them, while they sit 12 points behind league leaders Botafogo with 12 games remaining.
Palmeiras will fancy their chances of stopping the rot on Thursday as they have not lost any of their last 10 meetings with Atletico Mineiro in all competitions, albeit drawing eight times during this run.
Ferreira and co will be keen to rectify their home form as they have only won four of their last 10 in Sao Paulo, although all four home victories have taken place in their last five in the top flight, with the aforementioned loss to Santos last time out ending their winning streak.rrently sit ninth in this year’s standings, three points behind Thursday’s opponents Palmeiras in fourth.
Atletico Mineiro have a challenging run of fixtures on the horizon, with four of their next five games against teams above them who are also battling for a top-four finish, and this period will likely determine whether they can secure a spot in next season’s Copa Libertadores group stage or be forced to enter the qualification phase.
Galo, who have won only two of their last 10 away matches in all competitions, will be seeking revenge against Palmeiras, who beat them 1-0 on aggregate in a closely-fought two-legged clash in the Copa Libertadores quarter-finals in August.
Palmeiras Brasileiro form:
Palmeiras form (all competitions):
Atletico Mineiro Brasileiro form:
We say: Palmeiras 1-1 Atletico Mineiro
There has been little to separate Palmeiras and Atletico Mineiro in recent meetings, with no more than one goal scored in five of the last seven head-to-heads, and another tight affair could be in store on Thursday.
Both teams will be desperate to return to winning ways and boost their chances of securing a top-four finish, but with neither side firing on all cylinders, they may have to settle for a share of the spoils in Sao Paulo.