Columbia are set to take on Japan as they start their World Cup. The Colombians are looking to repeat the success they had in 2014 in Brazil when they took by at the World by storm making the quarter-finals before going out to Brazil. A match that should be thrilling and one of the most competitive groups in this world cup that features Poland’s Robert levandoski Japan’s Shinji Kagawa Senegal’s Sadio Mane and of course Colombia’s James Rodriguez. A group in which any combination of these four teams could make it to The Knockout stage there are favorites but this group is very much up for grabs. Columbia will look to start strong against a very capable Japan team.
Columbia come into this group as the heavy favorites I think it’s quite possible they win all 3 games. With the depth and talent they have in the attacking positions as well lead by a solid defense this is Colombia’s group to lose. From top to bottom they are the most deep team the most talented team the best coach team and in my opinion in this tournament they will have one of the best players. James Rodriguez lit up this tournament four years ago in Brazil winning the Golden Ball with six goals including a few Unforgettable moments. This Columbia team goes as he goes James Rodriguez is not alone but he is the engine of this team. This is a Columbia team that finished third in their qualifying group behind Brazil and Uruguay. This is the same Columbia team that made the quarterfinals four years ago in Brazil as well as taking third in the Copa America 2 years ago. This is the team that hasn’t made a lot of changes since the last World Cup this is a team that has been playing with each other for several years. There has been some turnover in the squad but everything is basically the same in terms of what they will bring. Columbia again I believe is a dark horse in this tournament although I highly doubt many consider them a dark horse this time around people know what they’re capable and what this team can do. The key player for Columbia in this matchup is definitely James Rodriguez despite and up and down last 3 years at Club level I fully believe that he will light up this tournament. The good thing about Rodriguez is that he’s not alone he has a very clinical Striker up front in Falcao and a speedy Winger in Juan Cuadrado the players that he has around him will only make things easier it will mutually allow him to do what he wants with the ball. The incredible depth is why I believe they are favorites in this game and heavy favorites to walk through the group however it’s easier said than done but based on what we have seen from this team there’s no doubt in my mind that they will win this game.
Japan is definitively the fourth best team in this group in terms of what they offer in the balance of power they have the least down to team. However that does not mean they don’t have the ability to come out of this. The difference in Talent among these 4 isn’t that great so they have an opportunity to make a statement in this game. If they can start off this tournament with a draw it will only give them the confidence going into two tough games against Poland and Senegal. The Japanese don’t really have that magician in the Midfield or a world-class Striker they have a lot of different pieces that can be effective on their day But they need to be at their best in this tournament and in this match if they are going to have a chance to advance out of the group. In my eyes it’s going to come down to Dortmund midfielder Shinji Kagawa he is the key player for this game Japan’s most important player for this tournament. if he can put together an incredible performance if he can take that role and be the aggressor but also be the facilitator and Servicing the Japanese Strikers they could shock a few. It is very important for them to start this tournament as well as they possibly can because they do not have a Superstars that the other three teams in this group have. But this is the World Cup anything can happen
James Rodriguez putting a goal past Japan in the 2014 World Cup Group stage.
The fact of the matter is I believe Colombia may just have a little too much for this Japanese team to handle. These two teams played in the last world cup during group play and James Rodriguez was able to rip through them quite easily I don’t see that changing. However they weren’t preparing for him last time out they will have eyes on him and defend Columbia according to James. If Shinji Kagawa is that his best and plays incredible football it will make it difficult for Columbia. However Columbia depth is going to be very difficult for them to overcome they have so many Striker options and their Midfield as many weapons. So even if Rodriguez doesn’t have a great game the Colombians have other tools to punish them if Columbia can I get on counter attacks on a frequent basis Columbia will punish them this style of football will make it very difficult for Japan to deal with. Defensively they will have to be superb to stop James Rodriguez and Company. Japan does have other options Muto is a good Striker and if I go they can give him service maybe they can get a good result but if Colombia gets on the counter it is game over. With a multiple weapons and their attacking players Off the Bench Columbia has the tools and deapth to break them down. At the end of the day I believe Columbia just has too much for Japan to handle with but it depends on if Columbia can play at their best if they do they have a great chance of qualifying but this game I can only see in going one way a Colombia win and I think Columbia will make easy work of the Japanese on Tuesday as they’ll put themselves in pole position in group H. However if Japan can take advantage of Error’s an upset isn’t out of the equation after all this is the world cup.
Columbia’s James Rodriguez and Japan’s Shinji Kagawa
Date: Tuesday, June 19thth, 2018
Venue: Mordovia Arena, Saransk (Russia)
Kickoff: 7:00AM (USA) 2:00PM (RUSSIA), 8:45PM (ITA)
TV Broadcast: FS1,FOX,KJKNT