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Saudi Arabia vs Qatar Predictions

  • 16:00
  • Expired
  • ZSC Stadium
Saudi Arabia
Qatar

odds when tipped

odds when tipped

Tip Reasoning

It’s thus far been plain sailing for Saudi Arabia at this tournament; they’ve won each of their first two matches without really getting out of second gear, while they’re through to the knockouts regardless of what happens in this fixture. Overly exerting themselves in Abu Dhabi may not be their main concern, though at the same time, Juan Antonio Pizzi’s men will be keen to go through as group winners.

From a performance point of view, Saudi Arabia are hard to criticise after two matches. On match-day one, they got serious in the final third against a weak North side, while they gave next to nothing away defensively. Much of the same can be said for when they beat Lebanon by two goals to nil last time out. On that occasion, the Green Falcons were slightly less flamboyant going forward, though they still managed to score two goals in what was essentially second gear, while they gave away absolutely nothing at the back, conceding a measly 0.06 expected goals.

The Saudi’s have not faced a side of Qatar’s quality at these finals yet, but they’ve got the tools to hurt better teams, as we saw when they beat Egypt at the World Cup in the summer.

Much like Thursday’s opponents, Qatar have made light work of recording two wins. On match-day one they delivered a performance not dissimilar to Saudi Arabia’s when easily beating Lebanon by two goals to nil, while they too ran riot against a poor North Korea outfit. It will be interesting to see how they get on against better opposition, but prior to this tournament, Qatar secured some pleasing results in friendlies, as they drew 2-2 with Iceland, beat Switzerland by a goal to nil and won a seven-goal thriller against Ecuador. Their efforts in those games suggest that they can compete against the Saudi Arabians in Abu Dhabi on Thursday.

Like the other group-decider taking place on Thursday, this is a match where ‘Both Teams to Score’ catches the eye. On match-days one and two, both Saudi Arabia and Qatar showed plenty going forward, so much so that it’s not hard to see both making headway in the final third in this fixture. With the Saudi’s averaging 1.61 expected goals for and with Qatar averaging 1.34, a bet on both to find the net is the way to go.

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