Nicaraguan Primera Clausura comes to an end Saturday, with playoff seeding still up for grabs
If you are not familiar with the Nicaraguan Primera Division, as most people that watch soccer would have been until this COVID-19 disaster, the league is split into two seasons.
The Apertura was won by Real Esteli, which finished the first half of the regular season in third place, but advanced through three rounds to knock off Managua FC 2-1 over two legs to win its 15th title.
Saturday, the second half of the regular season, the Clausura, will come to an end with five simultaneous matches. Managua FC has the top seed, and a bye to the semifinals, locked up with 39 points, but the second bye, and the final playoff spot, are still up for grabs.
Real Esteli is in pole position for that second place spot, and is favored on the road at ART Municipal Jalapa. But Diriangen FC is even on points (32) with Real Esteli, and is a huge favorite at home to win and take that bye, if Esteli falters.
At the other end of the playoffs, Juventus Managua can lock up sixth place (and the final spot) with a win on the road at Deportivo Las Sabanas CF. But Las Sabanas needs a win to ensure it will not be relegated.
There is a lot to play for Saturday, and the matches should be interesting.
NICARAGUA PRIMERA DIVISION: CLAUSURA — All games 5 p.m EDT
Real Esteli ML (-167)
Over 2.5 goals (-118)
Juventus Managua ML (+170)
Juventus Managua win to nil
THE PICK: Managua FC ML (-111)
Deportivo Ocotal ML (-125)
Diriangen FC -1 Asian handicap (-135)
Diriangen FC ML (-275), Managua FC U20 ML (-400), Juventus Managua U20 ML (-333), pays +122