Venezuela, currently at the bottom of the standings in the CONMEBOL World Cup 2018 qualifiers, take on Argentina, presently the No 1 team in the standings, at the Estadio Olímpico Metropolitano de Mérida in Venezuela on Tuesday. This is the eighth qualifier the teams are participating in.
Following seven matches so far, Lionel Messi's Albiceleste are on 14 points. They beat Uruguay 1-0 in their previous qualifier, with the only goal coming from the FC Barcelona magician himself, to move to the top of the standings. In contrast, Venezuela have six losses and one draw after seven games.
Enough to say who the undisputed favourite team is, going into the match. Home advantage however, can bring the best out of any team and Manchester United goalkeeper Sergio Romero knows about it.
"It is always hard, and more so when they [Venezuela] play at home," Romero told AFA. "Playing at home, the public always pushes. [However] Let's do our job and try to get the three points to keep learning, to keep growing."
Venezuela may have got some sort of an advantage as Argentine superstar Lionel Messi will not play a part in the match as he has been ruled out with a groin injury. Having said that, the Argentina team are way too star-studded, even without Messi, and Rafael Dudamel remains aware of that.
"We will continue as we said at the beginning; competing, fighting point to point, always standing, always with dignity, always with that competitive nature that characterises the Venezuelan football," said Dudamel to Venezuelan FA. "We know the quality rival that we will receive at home, but we will never surrender."
Venezuela vs Argentina is scheduled to kick off at 7 p.m. EST (12 a.m. BST, 4:30 a.m. IST [Wednesday]) on Sept. 6.
Where to watch live
India: TV: Sony ESPN. Live streaming: None.
UK: TV, Live streaming: None.
USA: TV: beIN Sports, Fubo TV. Live streaming: beIN Sports Connect.
Argentina: TV: TyC Sports. Live streaming: TyC Sports Play.
Venezuela: TV: Merediano TV.