November 2022

World Cup 2022 : Germany v Japan

World Cup 2022 : Germany v Japan  Germany come into this tournament with arguably as many questions about their longevity as Japan do. The Germans won it in 2014 and have been a season-in, season-out disappointment since. Japan have failed to match their reputation as the top team in Asia for a long time now. Despite both teams boasting some excellent talent (and leaving some great players back at home), they arrive at the tournament with more queries than solutions.

Japan, meanwhile, have picked a conservative line-up that is shorn of more or less any attacking stars. While the likes of Costa Rica and Spain pose excellent threats, Japan appear to have arrived at the tournament having borderline conceded they will be heading home early regardless. Germany, then, have a rare chance to build up a massive head of steam and win comfortably in a group stage match against a team coming to Qatar to absorb pressure.

Who will win this tie?

Germany, with some to spare. Japan simply have not got the attacking talent in their line-up to bother Germany. Celtic striker Kyogo Furuhashi has been left at home as the Samurai Blue go for a more conservative, less offensive approach. This will see them look to press and keep the opposition at bay, and counter quickly using their collection of interesting attacking midfielders.

Right now it would be hard to say with any certainty that Japan will even take a point in this group. Germany should win on the opening game without much real challenge at all.


Wales vs Iran

Wales vs Iran  Wales might not carry the same international controversy as the English national team, but they are still part of the United Kingdom. In the eyes of passionate Iranians looking to get one over an international foe, beating Wales would be akin to beating England. As such, Wales should come into this game with complete belief that they can get something here.

The early kick off time means most Wales fans will be eating their breakfast watching, but this should be an absorbing tie. Both teams are 100% committed to making this a spectacle to remember, and the tightness of three of the group seeds means that England, really, should come into this feeling pretty confident. Expect Wales to arrive in this one knowing they need to put on a show, as they might need the points ahead of a tie-up with England a dalliance with the USMNT in game one.

Who will win this tie?

Wales. Iran are a decent side, but Wales have the star power of Gareth Bale and a few other decent performers. Iran might have Mehdi Taremi, but outside of the big burly striker – who matches up well with the Wales back-line – they are short on quality. This should give Wales plenty of opportunity to overwhelm a weak enough defensive unit.

This could be the best game of the group in many ways, and should pose a very interesting match to watch for all involved. Definitely one to keep an eye on, but it should be Wale’s day.