With the World Cup only three months away, Alberto Zaccheroni's men host the All Whites in Tokyo and Hugh Wilson is backing plenty of action at the net on WednesdayJapan host New Zealand in Tokyo on Wednesday looking to kick-start their preparation for the World Cup finals taking place in Brazil in June. Alberto Zaccheroni's side were one of the first teams to qualify for the tournament, with their opponents in this friendly missing out in the play-offs, where they lost to Mexico 9-3 over two legs.
Interim coach Neil Emblen will be hopeful that his side react positively after those disappointing results, especially with a summer off for the majority of his players. William Hill price them at 10/1 (11.00) to scupper Japan's preparation and win in Tokyo.
The hosts have not played a competitive match in their last seven fixtures after qualifying early for the World Cup. Last year saw them play a number of high-profile friendlies, though, with matches against Belgium, Netherlands, Serbia and Ghana.
With only two friendlies, including this game, arranged before their first group match against Ivory Coast on 15th June, the players will be looking to impress to cement their starting place in Brazil. William Hill price them at just 1/4 (1.25) to win the match, with the same firm pricing the draw at 4/1 (5.00).
With the starting line-ups tough to predict in these friendlies, it is tough to find a standout bet in this fixture in player-specific markets and these are best avoided.
However, you can go by previous form in friendlies and Japan are far too short at 1/4 (1.25) so it is worth looking elsewhere for a bet that stands out that partly sides with New Zealand in some way. Over 2.5 goals at 7/10 (1.70) also seems a tad skinny but both teams to find the net at 13/8 (2.63) looks like it offers plenty of value with William Hill.
Japan have only kept one clean sheet in their last 13 matches and, with Zaccheroni's side scoring five in their last two friendlies, goals being scored should not be a problem.
New Zealand have scored in 11 of their last 13 games, including three goals against Mexico, and have the likes of Chris Wood and Shane Seltz to call upon up front so this bet looks particularly overpriced.
|Both teams to score at 13/8 (2.63) 1pt stake with William Hill|
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