It feels as though it just started, yet on Thursday, we arrive at the second-last day of Group Stage play at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. There has been plenty of excitement through the first two legs of the Group Stage. France, Brazil, and Portugal booked their spots in the Round of 16 in just two games, while the Netherlands and Senegal advanced on Monday.
Tuesday saw the completion of Group B games, with both England and the United States moving on. Thursday’s action includes teams in Groups E and F, and there’s plenty to be decided as all eight teams have an opportunity to advance.
The second slate of games on Thursday concludes Group E as Costa Rica plays Germany and Japan plays Spain, the latter two of which are first and second in the group.
Spain can advance with a draw and no additional help, while Japan automatically advances with a win and can advance with a draw if Germany and Costa Rica draw. Check out FIFA World Cup Odds.
Game Predictions Japan vs Spain
3-Way Betting Line Odds
Japan, despite beating Germany in what was a major upset, is a huge underdog heading into Thursday’s match. It is a +750 underdog on the 3-way moneyline, meaning you could win $750 on a successful $100 wager. Spain is the -250 favorite, while a draw pays out +350.
Different betting odds for Thursday’s game include the following:
- Both teams to score: Yes (+100) / No (-134)
- Half-time/full-time result: Japan-Japan (+1400), Japan-Draw (+1800), Draw-Spain (+300), Spain-Spain (+110), and Spain-Japan (+4000).
Looking Back at Their First Two Games
Spain, which sits first in Group E with 4 points, is the No. 7 team in the FIFA rankings. It tied its last match 1-1 against Germany and previously defeated Costa Rica 7-0 in the most lopsided victory to date of this year’s World Cup. Spain hasn’t lost in 11 games going back to a 2-1 loss to France in October 2021.
Japan, meanwhile, shocked the world with a 2-1 victory over Germany to open their tournament. Substitute Takuma Asano scored one of the goals of the tournament late in the 83rd minute to secure the victory for Japan. The Asian country was favored against Costa Rica and could have punched its ticket to the Round of 16 with a win, but lost 1-0 in an equally shocking result. Japan held a 57-43 possession advantage and outshot Costa Rica 13-4.
This has the potential to be one of the games of the Group Stage, as both teams have plenty to play for. Spain would be happy with a draw but could find itself eliminated with a loss depending on what happens in the Germany-Costa Rica match. Japan will be playing for the victory.
Spain defeated Japan 1-0 the last time these two countries played, but that was in an international friendly back in 2001. Japan has shown they can keep up with the best teams in Europe, but Spain has too much firepower. That said, Spain will be satisfied enough with a draw and may play a more defensive style as long as the match is all square.
Betting Pick: Draw +350
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