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Despite leading the Group E at the moment in the ongoing FIFA World Cup 2022, Spain's position is yet not confirmed for the knockout. To do so, the La Roja – nick name for Spain national football team – will face Japan on 1 November (2 November 12:30 am IST) at the Khalifa International Stadium.

Manager Luis Enrique's men are only seeking a point to get into the knockout, however, a win over the Blue Samurai – nick name for Japan – would ensure their seat.

In the previous fixture, the La Roja could only manage a draw against Germany, while the Blue Samurai suffered defeat against Costa Rica.

Overview:

The La Roja started with a winning spree in the opener while facing Costa Rica, as it thrashed the opponent by 7-0. This was Spain’s biggest ever World Cup victory. But in its second match against Germany, the one-time world cup winner managed to end the match in just a draw.

The match on 1 December will be a crucial one, as it will decide La Roja's future in the world's biggest tournament.

On the contrary, for Japan its a must win game. In their opener, the Blue Samurai shook the sports fans globally after defeating 4-time world cup winners Germany by 2-1. While got defeated itself by the Central American counterparts Costa Rica by 1-0.

Head to head:

As Die Nationalelf – nick name for the German national football team, is faming Costa Rica simultaneously and fighting for its survival in the tournament, for La Roja (Spain), the match against Blue Samurai would be a chance to kick out the Germans.

Perception says that Germany's loss may be a good sign for La Roja, provided the later's design on winning the tournament.

Spain have won their final group game in eight of their past nine World Cup appearances, and winning the match against Japan would put them on course to face Brazil in the quarter-finals, if both teams may that far.

On the contrary, the situation for the Blue Samurai's in the group is somewhat precarious. Japanese football manager Hajime Moriyasu has rated Spain to be world's best. Their previous performance against Costa Rica was not up to the mark and they would not like to repeat the same.

Key players:

Spain: Spanish player and Atletico Madrid striker Alvaro Morata will be a crucial player in the match aas he broke the deadlock against Germany.

However, La Roja will rely heavily on 18-year-old Barcelona midfielder Gavi. Though his presence is a a doubt for the match as he has been absent from training due to a minor injury. Real Betis midfielder Rodri can fill the void with 19-year-old Pedri. Also, 22-year-old Torres and Dani Olmo may seem to be influential for the lone world cup winners.

Japan: For the Blue Samurais captain Maya Yoshida would look to make the difference. It will rely on midfielders Ritsu Doan and forward Takuma Asano to take on the La Roja.

Lineup:

Japan possible XI (4-2-3-1): Gonda; Yamane, Itakura, Yoshida, Nagatomo; Tanaka, Morita; Doan, Kamada, Kubo; Maeda

Spain possible XI (4-3-3): Simon; Carvajal, P. Torres, Laporte, Alba; Koke, Rodri, Pedri; F. Torres, Morata, Olmo

Date, Time & Venue:

The Japan vs Spain match will be played on December 1 at 12:30 AM (December 2, IST).

Live-streaming details:

The Japan vs Spain match will be broadcast live on the Sports18 and Sports18 HD TV channels in India and Jio Cinema's app and website will both offer free live streaming of the event.

Prediction:

Being one time world cup winner, Spain would definitely have an advantage over the less experienced Blue Samurais. If Japan defeats Spain, it would be another world cup shocker. Since it defeated Germany in its first match, it can repeat this and Spain knows it very well.

However, looking at the circumstances, Japan’s win probability is just 12.3 per cent.

Our Prediction: Japan 0 - 2 Spain

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Saurav Mukherjee

A business media enthusiast...believe to listen more, than just blabbering like others.
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