Australia vs India Prediction: Socceroos to start Group B with victory

 | January 12 | 

3 mins read

ahmad bin ali al rayyan

The second game of the 2023 AFC Asian Cup takes place at the Ahmad bin Ali Stadium in Al Rayyan, Qatar, on Saturday (KO, 11:30), as Australia take on India in Group B.

2015 winners Australia arrive into this tournament as one of the favourites to lift the trophy after being narrowly defeated by Argentina in the last 16 of the 2022 World Cup, and the Socceroos will fancy their chances of getting off to a fast start against one of the lowest FIFA-ranked nations at Asian football's showpiece event.

India are 77 places below their opponents in the latest rankings and have only won once in their last five games.

Australia vs India Betting Tips:

  • Australia to win and under 3.5 goals @ 9/10
  • Highest scoring half - second half @ EVS

Team News

Australia warmed up for their Asian Cup opener with a 2-0 win over Bahrain last weekend, a game which provided head coach Graham Arnold with an opportunity to test out some newer players.

It remains to be seen whether he reverts back to a more experienced line-up on Saturday, though, with the Socceroos looking to qualify from the group - as winners - as quickly as possible.

Adelaide United goalkeeper Joe Gauci, who made just his second appearance for Australia last weekend, is on standby to start against India if Mat Ryan, who has a fractured cheekbone, isn't selected.

Harry Souttar and Jackson Irvine will help to form a strong spine while Craig Goodwin and Mitchell Duke are expected to provide the magic in attack.

India are missing some key players for this tournament including Jeakson Singh and Anisa Anwar Ali, who both have 18 national team caps.

There is plenty of international experience in the backline, though, with goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu and defenders Sandesh Jhingan and Pritam Kotal all holding over 50 caps.

Spearheading the India attack will be captain Sunil Chhetri, who is the most-capped (148) player and the all-time top goalscorer (93) of the India national team.

Match Odds

The two sides have met only once before, in 2011, when Australia won 4-0 in the group stage of the 2011 event. The Socceroos are huge favourites at 1/33 to beat India again, with a victory for India at 28/1 and the draw offered at 10/1.

Both teams to score on Saturday is 10/3 and it's EVS for over 3.5 goals.

Australia to win and under 3.5 goals @ 9/10

Finding value in this game is tough, given the disparity between the two sides, but backing fewer than four goals and Australia to emerge victorious could be the way to go.

Australia have only won and seen over 3.5 goals twice in 21 games since January 2022, albeit they have played strong opposition in many of them. Their last two matches, a friendly with Bahrain (2-0) and a 2026 World Cup qualifier against Palestine (1-0), were low-scoring affairs, though, and both reside outside FIFA's top 80 ranked nations. Palestine, in fact, are just three places higher than India (102).

The Socceroos should emerge as comfortable winners on Saturday but first round games do tend to be cagey, regardless of opposition, and it's likely to be a relatively new-look side that is just starting to find its feet with each other, so it could take some time before they get in the swing of things.

Australia to win & under 3.5 goals vs India at 9-10

Highest scoring half - second half @ EVS

India are unlikely to engage too much in the opening period, hoping to hang onto a draw for as long as possible, so Australia may have to be patient and work the ball around the pitch, hoping their physicality and talent will eventually prove too much.

India's most recent game was a World Cup qualifier against Qatar in November, and their opponents only managed a single goal in the first half before finding the net twice in the second.

Australia's quality should eventually show in the second half on Saturday.

Highest scoring half - second half in Australia vs India at EVS

Check out the rest of our Football Betting Tips here.

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