World Cup Betting: Japan vs. Columbia

World Cup Betting:  Japan vs. Columbia

Group C action on Tuesday at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. In this post we’ll look at a game between Japan and Columbia. Japan has one loss and a draw in their first two games, losing to the Ivory Coast and tying Greece. Columbia is on top of the group with two wins in two games having beaten Ivory Coast 2-1 and Greece 3-0. Columbia is almost assured of finishing the group stage in first place even in the unlikely event of a loss to Japan. They’ve got a +4 goal differential while Ivory Coast (the only team that could tie them) is dead even in the goals for/against.

Japan entered the World Cup with high hopes knowing that they had a group in which they could be competitive. Things really haven’t worked out for them. Head coach Alberto Zaccheroni has been especially disappointed with the way his team has been unable to dictate tempo at all. Against the Ivory Coast that’s one thing but they failed to get any decent scoring chances in a 0-0 draw with Greece who played the entire second half with only 10 men. Their best scorer, Shinji Kawaga, was benched for the Greece game though he should play here. Japan still has a theoretical chance to advance but to do so they have to get some help from Greece who faces Ivory Coast in the other Group C action. Of course they need to focus on what they can control which is this game.

Columbia has already qualified for the next round and it would take a very strange combination of events for them to lose out on the top spot. The expectation is that they’ll sit some starters here and tinker with their lineup knowing that their dance card has been punched for the knockout round. That does give us an odd motivational situation but we’re not sure that Japan has the talent to deal with it. What we do know is that Columbia isn’t a team known for their tenacious defense even at their best meaning that Japan should get better offensive chances than in either of their first two games. Not much value in Japan on the handicap line nor can we trust them to win outright or even salvage a draw. The ‘Over’ looks like the best play.