Today’s Predictions: Colombia Vs Japan
Columbia 1 – 2 Japan
The 16th match of the FIFA World Cup 2018 will take place between Colombia and Japan.
- Date : 19th June 2018
- Time 5:30 PM (IST)
- Venue : Saransk Stadium
Colombia had a strong showing at the previous World Cup, with James Rodrgiuez winning the golden boot as they reached the quarterfinal stage. Japan have become regulars at the World Cup now, but have never gone on a good run.
FIFA World Cup Qualification
Colombia were not very convincing during the qualifers, with not a single win against the sides ranked higher than them, including a home and away defeat to Argentina. However, they did not lose any ground against the lower ranked teams, and a resounding win over the previously unbeaten Ecuador and a an away draw against Peru on the final day earned them automatic qualification.
Japan cruised past their initial qualifying group, winning all their games after drawing the first one 0-0 with Singapore. In the third round, they faced a huge hiccup as UAE beat them at home, however they recovered and earned a huge win over Saudi Arabia also, before a huge 2-0 win over Australia (their first win over them in 8 attempts), secured automatic qualification for them.
Colombia have 2 wins and 3 defeats in their last 6 matches, but they suffered a disappointing 2-1 defeat to South Korea in November last year. Just a week after thrashing China 4-0, Colombia earned their biggest win in recent times when they beat tournament favourites France 3-2 in March. They’ve had 2 goalless draws in their most recent world cup fixtures 2018, an improvement to their otherwise erratic defence.
Japan have endured a miserable run of form of late, with 4 defeats in their last 6 matches. The only shining light is that they comprehensively defeated Paraguay 4-2 in their most recent fixture. A 1-1 draw to Mali aside, they have sufferance consecutive defeats to Belgium, Switzerland, Ghana and Ukraine, scoring just 1 goal in those 4 matches, while conceding 7, which is a huge cause of worry for their fans.
Head To Head Record
These two nations have met thrice before, with a 1-1 draw Japan’s best result in the Kirin cup in 2007, while Colombia won on the other two occasions at the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2003 Confederations Cup.
Colombia do not have any major injury worries, with their main striker Radamel Falcao determined to make up for missing out last time. Many new young players have been added to the batch of 2014, none more impressive than Barcelona’s towering center back Yerry Mina and attacking midfielder Edwin Cardona.
Japan’s biggest worry in recent times has been the fitness of their inspirational captain Makoto Hasebe, who spent the entire 2017/18 season out with injury, however, he has been declared fit for this tournament. Several youngsters, such as Takuma Asano and Yuya Kubo will be making their debuts at the World Cup.
Players To Watch Out For
The last World Cup’s golden boot winner James Rodriguez is still the biggest star in the side, having regained his form and confidence at Bayern Munich. He would be central to whatever they create in attack once again. Radamel Falcao and Caros Bacca would be looking to carry their club form to the World Cup to establish a lethal attacking partnership.
Veteran goalkeeper Kawashima is back as the first choice keeper, while other stalwarts like Keisuke Honda and Shinji Kagawa are still around to carry their nation forward with their experience. Leicester’s Shinji Okazaki is their best hope in attack, while Southampton’s Maya Yoshida is a rock at the back.
Colombia Vs Japan Betting Odds And Key Statistics
- Colombia are favourites to win this match, with several bookmakers establishing them as less than odds on to win.
- This will be Colombia’s 7th World Cup appearance, and they won 4 out of their 5 matches at the 2014 World Cup to reach the final 8.
- Japan’s first ever world cup was as recently as 1998. They have never made it beyond the round of 16, and failed to qualify from their group at the 2014 World Cup.
- Colombia have a strong attack, but their defence tends to leak in easy goals, especially their keeper David Ospina, who endured a frustrating season at Arsenal, and is capable of making crucial mistakes. Hence, we would advise you to bet on the both teams to score market as well as the above 2.5 goals market.
Japan are ranked 60th in the world, much below their opponents, and haven’t been in the greatest of forms coming into this tournament. Colombia have way too much quality in their ranks to overcome their opponents, and we expect a comfortable victory for the South Americans.
Predicted Scoreline : Colombia 3-1 Japan.