Uruguay vs. Bolivia Preview: Live Odds, Props, & Expert Analysis


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Uruguay vs. Bolivia Preview: Live Odds, Props, & Expert Analysis

Uruguay’s players began their Copa America campaign with an emphatic 3-1 victory over Panama. They now lead Group C, and they can qualify for the knockout stage of the competition if they beat Bolivia on Matchday 2. Uruguay is a -650 favorite to win this game, which will take place Thursday at MetLife Stadium.

Bolivia lost 2-0 to the US on Matchday 1. La Verde face elimination if they suffer another defeat on Thursday, so the players should be highly motivated. However, the Bolivians have lost five of their last six games against Uruguay, and they are +1900 underdogs for this match in Copa America betting odds.

Uruguay vs. Bolivia live odds & lines

Uruguay vs. Bolivia player props

Uruguay’s path to victory likely includes Núñez

Liverpool striker Darwin Núñez played a starring role in Uruguay’s 3-1 win against Panama. He scored a powerful volley in the second half, and he also impressed with his all-round play. That goal took his tally to 12 in 24 games for Uruguay.

Uruguay manager Marcelo Bielsa made a bold call in starting Núñez ahead of veteran striker Luis Suárez, who is the country’s all-time leading goalscorer. That decision was vindicated, as Núñez spearheaded the attack with aplomb. However, he has been inconsistent over the past couple of years, and he often misses chances, so Núñez’s teammates may need to be patient with him at this tournament. If he receives the right level of service, he should eventually score, and he has the quality to make life difficult for Bolivia’s defense.

Bolivia might have to tighten its defense to win

Bolivia has not won a game on foreign soil since 2015. La Verde often secure impressive results when playing at home, as opponents tend to struggle in the high altitudes of La Paz. That was evident when they picked up a 3-0 home win against Uruguay in November 2021. However, they have not beaten Uruguay on foreign soil since 1949.

They are currently on a four-game losing streak, so the players will not exactly be surging with confidence right now. The Bolivians have conceded nine goals in those last four matches, and they will need to be stronger in defense if they are to keep Núñez at bay on Thursday. La Verde were down 2-0 at halftime against the USMNT on Matchday 1, and they will need to be far more resolute if they hope to avoid a similar fate this time around.

Uruguay expected starting 11

Sergio Rochet will start in goal for Uruguay. Captain José Giménez was restricted to a second-half cameo appearance on Matchday 1, but he could be fit enough to start alongside Barcelona’s Ronald Araújo at the heart of the defense against Bolivia, with Mathías Olivera dropping to the bench. Matías Viña is Uruguay’s first-choice left-back, and Natihan Nández could start at right-back ahead of Sebastián Cáceres.

Manuel Ugarte and Federico Valverde formed an excellent midfield partnership against Panama, so they are likely to keep their places. Flamengo’s Giorgian de Arrascaeta played in the No. 10 role against Panama. He could keep his place, although Brian Rodríguez offers another option. Núñez is likely to start up front, flanked by Facundo Pellistri and Maximiliano Araújo.

Bolivia expected starting 11

Bolivia manager Antônio Carlos Zago typically favors a traditional back four, but he opted for a 3-1-4-2 formation against the US. If he persists with that, we could see Luis Haquín, José Sagredo, and Jesús Sagredo form a back three in front of goalkeeper Guillermo Viscarra. Adrián Jusino played as a holding midfielder against the USMNT, so he could hold onto that role.

Marcelo Suárez often starts at right-back for Bolivia, but he was deployed on the right of a four-man midfield on Matchday 1. Roberto Fernández was on the left, with Fernando Saucedo and Gabriel Villamil in the middle, and Bruno Mirando and César Menacho up front. Zago may decide to tweak his formation versus Uruguay, and the likes of Carmelo Algarañaz and Rodrigo Ramallo offer other options in attack. Midfielders Ramiro Vaca and Boris Céspedes also sat against the US, and they may receive a chance in this match.

Photo by Associated Press