Japan and Spain will go head to head in the final round of the FIFA World Cup 2022 group stage. To qualify, the Samurai Blues’ first priority is a win or a tie though the latter has the possibility to contest with fellow group opponents’ records.
As for Spain, they have to avoid defeat at any cost to progress to the knockouts while a win over the Asian sides will ensure a top position. Whatever the permutations, the showdown is going to be riveting and tight in tandem.
The Japan that Spain is going to face isn’t just a team that ranks notably lower than them in FIFA but it is the squad that pulled one of the upsets of this tournament. The Samurai Blues created headlines when they defeated four-time world champion Germany in their opening. Read further about what odds Spain holds to beat Japan.
Japan vs Spain Recent Team News And Expected Lineups
While Atletico Madrid forward, Alvaro Morata has definitely proven his lethality in the front, it’s still unsure if Spain’s coach, Luis Enrique will choose him to be among the first men to start the game. Despite missing a few or two chances against Germany the other day, Real Madrid striker Marco Asensio may still make it to the starting eleven. In the mid, the trio of Pedri, Gavi, and Busquets are only going to be more and more inevitable for Spain as the competition progresses towards the conclusion. However, according to recent sources, Gavi has been missing training which has made him doubtful for the upcoming fixture. The one more miss from the aforesaid names is the captain, Sergio Busquets who is simply on the bench to avoid a second yellow card of the tournament. Consequently, his spot is up for grabs with Koke, Carlos Soler, and Marcos Llorente all hoping to first handle the midfield.
Chelsea’s veteran defender Cesar Azpilicueta is also one such player that Spain is going to rely on first as long as they are in this tournament.
Similar to Spain, Japan may also hesitate to experiment with its so far first eleven. However the Asian side’s coach, Hajime Moriyasu might have developed second thoughts on whether to start Reims winger Junya Ito after his somewhat decent performance against Costa Rica off the bench in the 67th minute. This though means Nagoya Grampus winger Yuki Soma has to wait for his turn in the subs. Some called out Japan’s mentor for not including their hero against Germany, Takuma Asano in the starting squad against Costa Rica. He however this time may well get to serve from the first minute considering Ayase Ueda’s mild performance in the previous game. The other hero from the very game is Ritsu Doan who also may come into the first picture.
Some doubtful subjects are the defenders Takehiro Tomiyasu and Hiroki Sakai who are still recovering from their hamstring injuries. So is also the case with Stuttgart midfielder Wataru Endo. The veteran FC Tokyo full-back Yuto Nagatomo is set to complete his 140 caps, come this fixture. Helping him will be Miki Yamane and Ko Itakura. Last year’s one of the best from Eintracht Frankfurt, Daichi Kamada’s playmaking is also equally necessary for Japan who very well could be supporting Daizen Maeda or Ayase Ueda ahead of him.
Japan vs Spain Possible Lineups
Japan: Gonda; Yamane, Itakura, Yoshida, Nagatomo; Tanaka, Morita; Doan, Kamada, Kubo; Maeda
Spain: Simon; Carvajal, P Torres, Laporte, Alba; Koke, Rodri, Pedri; F Torres, Morata, Olmo
Japan vs Spain Predictions
Spain’s scoring eight goals in two matches and being heavy for the likes of Germany not only in this tournament but for years makes them anyway threatening. Looking at their recent forms, they also come across as a team who doesn’t entertain upset that easily, one that is against them. In the last 18 matches, the Iberian sides have only lost three times and have recorded 13 wins.
While Japan too has a similar win, draw, and loss record, the Asian sides haven’t had the experience of as many competitive European matches except for their recent victory against Germany. Also, Spain is yet to be beaten by the Asian teams in the last five matches of the World Cup tournaments though this is only true within the 90-minute mark. Furthermore, Spain is more relaxed than any of its group opponents. If nothing they are going to exhaust Japan to its bones while giving little to no chance of a counter-attack and they are more than capable and will be happy to do that.
Out Projected Scoreline: Japan 0-2 Spain
Japan vs Spain Previous Meetings
Spain and Japan have only one historical meeting between them. It however was way back in 2001 in a friendly match that saw the European side clinching the victory with a score of 1-0.
Japan vs Spain Most Recent Odds
|8/1 (9.00) to win|
|11/1 (12.00) for Takuma Asano to score the first goal|
|4/11 (1.36) to win|
|10/3 (4.33) for Alvaro Morata to score the first goal|
|13/2 (7.50) for Dani Olmo to score the first goal|
|6/1 (7.00) for Marco Asensio to score the first goal|
|15/4 (4.75) for a draw|
Japan vs Spain Previous Stats Of Each Team
|3||Shots on target||1|
|6||Shots inside box||1|
|3||Shots on target||4|
|0||Big chances missed||1|
|3||Shots inside box||8|