Japan vs Myanmar Match Analysis & Prediction
16/11/2023 1:02 pm
Japan will kick off their 2026 World Cup qualifying campaign on Thursday when they play host to Myanmar at the Panasonic Stadium.
The visitors will head into the midweek contest after having already come through one round to reach this stage of qualifying.
Almost a year has now passed since Japan made a huge impression at the 2022 World Cup, coming through a group that included each of Spain and Germany.
A penalty-shootout exit to Croatia in the last 16 hurt Hajime Moriyasu’s side, the feeling being that there was an opportunity to go deep into the tournament.
However, Japan have since been able to build on that progression, winning six of eight friendlies, the wins in question coming in succession since June.
Another victory over Germany, this time on away territory, is included during that period, bu scoring four goals against Peru, Turkey and Canada were impressive feats in themselves.
Moriyasu will be pleased to get to competitive matter over the coming months, their opening World Cup qualifiers coming either side of January’s Asian Cup.
On the other hand, Myanmar have already achieved their minimum goal of making it through to the group stage with victory over Macau.
Michael Feichtenbeiner witnessed his side cruise to a 5-1 victory in the first leg before they played out a goalless draw in the away reverse match.
That has extended their unbeaten run to five matches across all competitions, yet it should be noted that their only opponents during that time have been Macau and Nepal.
Prior to that, when playing stronger teams, Myanmar went 16 matches without a win across an 18-month period, highlighting the amount of task that awaits them on Thursday.
Japan vs. Myanmar Head to head
Japan have won each of the two previous encounters between these two teams, scoring 12 goals without conceding.
10/09/2019Myanmar0Japan2AFC World Cup Qualifiers
28/05/2021Japan10Myanmar0AFC World Cup Qualifiers
16/11/2023JapanN/AMyanmarN/AAFC World Cup Qualifiers
Japan Team News
The experienced Shogo Taniguchi may come into the centre of the Japan defence, while Takumi Minamino could be drafted into the side on the left flank.
Takuma Asano will likely get the nod in attack, with the rest of the team from the win over Tunisia potentially staying the same.
Japan's Last 5 Matches
Myanmar Team News
Feichtenbeiner is expected to select the same Myanmar XI that started the 5-1 victory over Macau on October 12.
Aung Kaung Mann came off the substitutes’ bench to score in that game, while central-forward Than Paing did not, but the latter should retain his spot down the middle of the frontline.
Myanmar's Last 5 Matches
12/10/2023Myanmar5Macau1AFC World Cup Qualifiers
17/10/2023Macau0Myanmar0AFC World Cup Qualifiers
Japan vs. Myanmar: Odds and Predictions
Handicap Japan (-6.5): Yes
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