Today sees the final group games, with the Group H teams playing in the afternoon and the qualifiers to be decided.
Japan currently head the group and face Poland knowing a draw is sufficient to be sure of growing through to the knockout phase.
Poland have been very disappointing but it would be unwise to write them off completely as they will fight for their pride. We won’t make a call on who wins this game, but note that Japan have scored four goals in their opening two games. Midfielder Takashi Inui has been outstanding in their opening games, and we’ll take a punt he scores.
The second game sees Senegal take on Colombia. The Africans also only need a point to qualify but face a Colombia side that was very impressive in dismissing the Poles last time out.
We think Colombia are probably the class of this group, and expect them to win this match. And with Colombia’s tricky forwards facing Senegal’s rugged defenders we’ll take the 5/1 on offer that the South Americans score a penalty.
The evening games come from Group G, with the game between England and Belgium the highlight.
It’s difficult to call this game – both teams have already qualified, both are likely to rest players, and there’s an underlying feeling that coming second in the group may be beneficial with Germany out of the tournament.
Still, both teams know there are more important games to come so they may not want to push too hard or pick up unnecessary bookings. Thus we’ll take a punt that this game ends with no yellow cards produced.
The final game is s big of a nonevent. Tunisia and Panama have lost both of their games to date and are out of the tournament.
Of the two, we think Tunisia are the more talented side and will take their penalty taker Ferjani Sassi to score at anytime given the rough nature of Panama’s defenders.
Japan/Poland: Inui to score anytime, 1 pt, at 9/2, bet365
Colombia/Senegal: Colombia to score a penalty, 1 pt, at 5/1, bet365
England/Belgium: No bookings in the match, 1 pt, at 16/1, Betfair Sportsbook
Tunisia/Panama: Sassi to score anytime, 1 pt, at 4/1, William Hill
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