Bahrain vs Japan Prediction: Ueda to send Samurai Blue into quarters

 | January 30 | 

3 mins read

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Bahrain emerged as surprise winners of Group E to set up a 2023 AFC Asian Cup Round of 16 tie with the runner-up from Group D - Japan - on Wednesday (KO, 11:30) at the Al Thumama Stadium in Doha.

That's perhaps not the reward Bahrain were expecting for topping a group containing South Korea, with Japan starting the tournament as favourites to lift the trophy, but the Samurai Blue were humbled 2-1 by Iraq in between wins over Vietnam (4-2) and Indonesia (3-1).

Bahrain actually started off the competition with a 3-1 defeat to South Korea, before back-to-back 1-0 wins over Malaysia and Jordan.

The winner of this tie will go on to face either Iran or Syria in the quarter-finals.

Bahrain vs Japan Betting Tips:

  • Japan to win and over 2.5 goals @ 8/11
  • Ayase Ueda to score anytime @ 23/20

Team News

Amine Benaddi appears doubtful for Bahrain after failing to feature since their opener against South Korea, when he sustained a knock.

Kaoru Mitoma, meanwhile, is yet to feature at the Asian Cup after arriving to Qatar injured, and looks unlikely to make the Japan matchday squad again.

Hajime Moriyasu made nine changes for his side's final group game, with only Wataru Endo and Takefusa Kubo keeping their starting spots, but the duo should be joined by the likes of Takumi Minamino and Hidemasa Morita again.

Match Odds

Bahrain are huge underdogs to win the tie in 90 minutes on Wednesday, priced at 12/1 with Betfred. Japan are hugely fancied at 1/6, while the draw - which would take the contest into extra-time - is 5/1.

Both teams to score - which landed in all three of Japan's group games - is 11/8.

Japan to win and over 2.5 goals @ 8/11

Bahrain deserve great credit for topping their group, but they lost pretty convincingly to South Korea and the two teams they did beat - marginally - were below them in the FIFA World Rankings.

Japan, meanwhile, recovered from defeat to Iran to win easily against Indonesia. In fact, 11 of the Samurai Blue's last 12 wins have seen at least four goals scored in the game.

Going slightly more conservative here given the stakes, Japan to win and over 2.5 goals looks the play - Moriyasu's side are in rampant goalscoring form, but haven't kept a clean sheet in their last four games.

Japan & over 2.5 goals in Bahrain vs Japan at 8-11

Ayase Ueda to score anytime @ 23/20

The Feyenoord forward started Japan's first two games of the tournament on the bench - scoring as a substitute in the first - before being given the nod ahead of Mao Hosoya and Takuma Asano against Indonesia.

After bagging a brace in the final group game - taking his tally to three in Qatar - surely it's Ueda's spot to lose now.

The chances of Ueda scoring are boosted by his successful penalty kick against Indonesia, meaning he should be firmly in the frame to take Japan's next one, and he now has seven goals across his last three starts for the Samurai Blue.

Ayase Ueda to score anytime in Bahrain vs Japan at 23-20

You can find all our latest Football Betting Tips over on our dedicated Insights football page.


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