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Vietnam vs Japan Predictions

  • 13:00
  • Expired
  • Al-Maktoum Stadium

odds when tipped

odds when tipped

odds when tipped

Tip Reasoning

Considering that Vietnam scrambled out of the groups thanks to a match-day three win over lowly Yemen, it was no surprise that they went into their last-16 fixture with Jordan as 4/1 outsiders. However, despite not being fancied in the betting, Park Hang-seo’s men came from a goal down to level, before finally winning on penalties.

Despite losing 3-2 against a useful Iraq side on match-day one, Vietnam didn’t look too bad. They weren’t great at the back and probably did give away too much for manager Hang-seo’s liking, though they surprised a few people by getting seriously competitive in the final third. On that occasion, they created chances and scored a couple of goals. Their opening match was followed by a very tough game against the side that has since gone on to become tournament favourites. Frankly, the Vietnamese can be forgiven for coming up short against Iran, while the fact that they avoided being battered is pleasing.

A convincing win against a poor Yemen side on match-day three set the Vietnamese on their way. Facing a Jordan side that impressed during the groups was never going to be easy, but the way in which Hang-seo’s men went about their business at this venue last time out was pleasing. They showed both character and desire to come back into the game after going a goal down, while their overall efforts at both ends of the pitch were admirable. Considering that Japan haven’t exactly brushed teams aside, the Vietnamese may just fancy themselves ahead of Thursday’s clash.

Japan did advance from the groups with a 100% record, though it wasn’t all plain sailing for Hajime Moriyasu’s men. They were pushed hard by Turkmenistan on match-day one before coming out on top by three goals to two, while Uzbekistan also gave the Japanese a game. Interestingly, Samurai Blue have been unable to win by more than a single goal margin since touching down in the United Arab Emirates.

Defensively, the Japanese have looked reasonably sturdy; they’ve not given too much away, while they’ve managed to be both professional and disciplined once in front in games, even if their negative tactics haven’t been great on the eye. However, while they’ve done well at the back, the Japanese have offered far less of a threat than many people would’ve expected them to. They’re averaging just 1.37 expected goals for at this tournament, while they clocked a rather embarrassing 0.66 against Saudi Arabia on Monday.

Considering that Japan have adopted a rather pragmatic approach at this tournament, coupled with the fact that they created very little against Saudi Arabia last time out, it’s easy to feel that they’re too short in the early betting. Vietnam have proved that they can compete and, if the Japanese continue to sit back, they ought to enjoy seeing plenty of the ball, as they did against both Yemen and Jordan.

Given the above, there are two bets that stand out. Firstly, ‘Vietnam +1 Asian Handicap’ looks overpriced. The Vietnamese did a good job of matching Jordan last time out and they’ve got little to fear if Japan continue to adopt a cautious approach. Secondly, ‘Under 2.5 Goals’ is also worth a go at the current prices. Neither side has looked overly creative – Japan clocked just 0.66 expected goals for last time out, while Vietnam managed 0.93 – and with Japan likely to focus on defensive solidity first and foremost, a low-scoring game seems a tad more likely than the current prices suggest.

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