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Preview: Bolivia vs. Chile - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Bolivia vs. Chile - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Tuesday's World Cup Qualifying - South America clash between Bolivia and Chile, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Bolivia and Chile will continue their World Cup 2022 Qualification campaigns on Tuesday, when they do battle in La Paz.

With the two nations separated by just a single point outside of the top five, both will see a victory as crucial in their bid to creep into the progression spots in the final few games.

Match preview

After earning just one win and six points from their opening 10 qualifying games, Bolivia's chances of reaching the 2022 World Cup looked all but gone, but La Verde have kept themselves in the hunt recently.

Cesar Farias's men firstly arrested a slump with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Peru thanks to Ramiro Vaca's goal, before Rodrigo Ramallo, Moises Villarroel, Victor Abrego and Roberto Fernandez got on the scoresheet in a 4-0 thrashing of Paraguay in October.

Following a defeat in the reverse fixture against Peru, Bolivia dished out another thrashing, beating a heavily-fancied Uruguay side 3-0 in arguably their strongest showing of qualification, with Juan Carlos Arce hitting a brace alongside a Marcelo Moreno goal.

While they built confidence for this round of qualifying fixtures with a 5-0 thumping of Trinidad and Tobago in a friendly, La Verde's qualification hopes took a major hit as they were beaten 4-1 by Venezuela in Barinas last time out.

As a result, Farias's team sit eighth in the qualifying group, trailing Uruguay in the playoff place by four points, and, with only three games left to play, they will know that they may require three victories to still stand a chance.

They welcome a Chile side also in need of a strong finish if they are to keep their slim progression hopes alive.

Similarly to their opponents, La Roja had a tough start to the campaign, winning just a single game from their opening 10 before they kicked off a turnaround with a 2-0 victory over Paraguay thanks to goals from Ben Brereton Diaz and Mauricio Isla.

They built on that with a 3-0 thrashing of Venezuela and a 1-0 win in another meeting with Peru, before the final round of fixtures last year was rounded off with a disappointing defeat to Ecuador.

Upon their return to action last week, La Roja faced the tough test of a clash with second-placed Argentina, and, despite Brereton Diaz pulling a goal back, they eventually fell to a 2-1 defeat.

That has left them in seventh spot, and, with Uruguay three points ahead and fourth-placed Peru four clear, they are also reliant on a strong run to end qualifying if they are to stay in the hunt for a place in this year's tournament.

Bolivia World Cup Qualifying - South America form:
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L

Bolivia form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L

Chile World Cup Qualifying - South America form:
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • L

Chile form (all competitions):
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • L

Team News

Bolivia will be without midfielder Leonel Justiniano, who will serve a suspension after he was sent off against Venezuela last time out.

Farias should continue to trust his experienced core of players, with Marcelo Moreno and Juan Carlos Arce set to lead the attack with 29 and 14 international goals to their names respectively.

After a valiant effort against Argentina, Chile are unlikely to make many changes for Tuesday's game, with veteran midfielder Arturo Vidal continuing to miss out, although goalkeeper Claudio Bravo will be absent after being forced off through injury.

Alexis Sanchez, who leads his nation's all-time scoring and appearance charts, has seemingly re-found his form for Inter Milan, and the 33-year-old will continue to play a key role for his nation.

Meanwhile, Ben Brereton Diaz will again lead the line after scoring his fourth international goal in his 10th outing last time out, with the Blackburn Rovers man enjoying stellar runs of form on both the domestic and international fronts since declaring his allegiance to La Roja.

Bolivia possible starting lineup:
Lampe; Bejarano, Quinteros, Sagredo; Ramallo, Vaca, Villarroel, Fernandez; Arce; Miranda, Moreno

Chile possible starting lineup:
Cortes; Isla, Maripan, Medel, Vegas; Pulgar, Aranguiz; Vargas, Nunez, Sanchez; Brereton Diaz

We say: Bolivia 1-1 Chile

Chile boast the stronger of the two squads, but La Paz is a notoriously tough place to visit, and, as a result, we cannot quite split the teams.

With both desperate for a crucial victory to try and sneak into the top five, the two nations could cancel out each other's efforts on Tuesday and settle for a share of the spoils that benefits neither.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting an away win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Away Win:data

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