The biggest match of the week is between two of the best programs in Nicaragua, as Real Esteli and Diriangen will compete on Wednesday. Barring a tie, somebody is going to take over sole possession of 2nd place in the Liga Primera de Nicaragua. It’s still going to take some extra work to pass Managua, but a win would help today.
It’s unlikely Managua loses against Jalapa this week, though it’s important to keep pace as we near the end of the season. A win and Managua loss would be the best-case scenario. However, the odds are stacked against Managua losing. They are around a -300 favorite over Jalapa as of Tuesday night.
Real Esteli gets the edge as they’re the home team, but Diriangen is likely going to bring a strong effort. Both clubs are aware of the magnitude of this match, so it’s improbable that either are going to take the day off. The one thing impacting focus has to be the coronavirus.
That could easily alter how they are feeling. With that said, both clubs are playing under the same conditions and the coronavirus distraction is the same. Identifying who isn’t bothered as much is the goal, albeit the only way to do that is how they’re playing.
Diriangen and Real Esteli have been okay recently. Real Esteli has two wins in their last five matches, with two losses and a draw. Nothing bad there and nothing great. The same goes for Diriangen who have two wins, two losses, and a draw in their last five matches. Neither club has really taken off recently, which is leaving the door open for Walter Ferretti to come and steal 2nd.
Walter Ferretti gets a bad opponent this week, so Real Esteli and Diriangen have to assume that Walter Ferretti will be adding points to their total on Wednesday. Real Esteli are coming off a 3-1 win against Chinandega, while Diriangen put up a draw against Municipal Jalapa. That’s a missed opportunity versus a beatable Jalapa squad. If they play like that today, they’re not beating Real Esteli. Head below for our free Real Esteli vs. Diriangen pick.
Real Esteli FC vs. Diriangen FC Liga Primera Nicaragua Betting Odds:
Real Esteli FC vs. Diriangen FC Prediction:
Real Esteli holds the edge because of home field advantage, but these clubs are as equal as you can find in the standings. Real Esteli owns a record of 9-4-3 and 31 points, while Diriangen has posted a record of 9-4-3 and 31 points as well. Goal differential wise, Real Esteli owns a serious advantage, though, with a +17 compared to a +9 for Diriangen. If you start to crunch the numbers a bit, there’s one team that has been better despite identical records. Overall, Real Esteli have been effective with 1.46 goals scored per game and 0.67 goals conceded.
Where Real Esteli really excels, and where they have the advantage in this match, is their stadium. They’ve been tremendous at home, which is likely going to be the difference in this match Wednesday. Real Esteli have put up nice numbers, with an average of 1.85 goals scored and just 0.45 goals conceded per match. Everything was working for them in their matchup against Chinendega in a 3-1 victory. Real Esteli dominated the time of possession, 63% to 37%, and total shots with 11 as opposed to 5 for Chinendega.
Diriangen have struggled mightily on the road, having scored just 0.94 goals per game. The defence has actually been fine with 1 goal conceded, but allowing even 1 goal against Real Esteli may very well result in a loss at the end of 90+ minutes. As we just noted, Real Esteli are capable of playing lockdown defence and will likely do it against a poor offensive team on Wednesday. Diriangen was the winner in their most recent meeting, 2-0, on March 14 in Diriangen. With a change in venue, expect Real Esteli to do the same to Diriangen. I like a 1-0 or 2-0 win for Real Esteli. You can sprinkle a bit on the draw for protection, but it’s hard to see Diriangen winning here.