Once the qualifying rounds for the knockout phase are over, it’s time for the round of 16 of the World Cup in Qatar. The fifth challenge will take place on the afternoon of Monday 5 December, and will see the surprise Japan and Croatia face off.
The surprises continue in this World Cup. The fifth-of-eighth final is in fact the one between Japan and Croatia, where the Japanese have even eliminated Germany and instead the Croatians eliminated Belgium.
Japan is a very dangerous team. He showed in the group that he has very important weapons in attack, that he knows how to defend himself well and counterattack with great speed. Samurai are tactically prepared, and their intelligence helps them overcome physical difficulties. This team has more quality than the last editions, and the mix between experienced players and young players has found a perfect balance. The only problem is concentration, which occasionally comes and goes as we saw against Costa Rica: the only game in which they were favourites, in fact, the Japanese managed to lose. However, the samurai deservedly qualified for the knockout phase, as they even managed to win group E. To do so, they had to defeat not only Germany but also Spain, in the last act: in both cases, they managed to come back from down 1-0 to 1-2.
On the other hand there is Croatia, another big name for the Japanese. The red and white national team has an above average quality, especially in midfield, where world-class players play: above all the former Ballon d’Or player Luka Modric, but then also Brozovic, Kovacic, Perisic and the others. The Croatians know they are favorites in this match, but everything is very open: this is a team that, also by nature, can potentially win and lose against anyone. On the other hand, it also proved it in the qualifying round. Croatia was in fact classified second in group F behind the other surprise of the World Cup, Morocco, which forced Belgium to return home. However, Croatia only shone against Canada, to whom they scored 4 goals; for the rest, two humble 0-0 against Moroccans and Belgians. This means that the potential is there but the best players must be in the day, otherwise in the knockout stage the slightest mistake risks sending you home.
Japan-Croatia timetable and where to watch it on TV or in streaming
The match Japan-Croatia play Monday 5 December 2022 at 16.00 Italian time at Al Janoub Stadium in Qatar. For the fifth eighth-final of the tournament, the Japanese and Croatians face each other.
The match, like all the others of the World Cup in Qatar, will be broadcast free of charge and unencrypted on the channels Rai. Alternatively, the race can also be seen in streaming on the platform Rai Play.
Probable formations Japan-Croatia
Probable formation Japan (4-2-3-1): Gonda; Sakai, Tomyasu, Yoshida, Nagatomo; Endo, Morita; Ito, Kamada, Kubo; Maeda. All. Hajime Moriyasu
Probable formation Croatia (4-3-3): Livakovic; Juranovic, Lovren, Gvardiol, Sosa; Kovacic, Brozovic, Modric; Livaja, Kramaric, Perisic. All. Zlatko Dalic
The draw: the possible opponents in the quarter-finals
Japan and Croatia probably found themselves on the “wrong” side of the board, in the sense that according to the forecasts neither of them should be on the “left” side. This is because Japan even won their group, while Croatia qualified as runners-up: if it could also be expected from the Croatians given the presence of Belgium – then even eliminated – the Japanese were a real surprise, “stealing ” the place to Spain. This messed things up a bit.
Having said that, the winner of Japan-Croatia will face the winner of Brazil-South Korea in the quarterfinals, a match that will be broadcast a few hours later – at 20.00 Italian time again on Monday 5 December. In the evening, therefore, the two winning formations will already know the respective opponent on which they will have to pass to enter the best 4 teams in the world. The quarter-finals will then be played between Friday 9 and Saturday 10 December 2022.
DOWNLOAD THE TABLE WITH ALL THE ROUND OF 16 UPDATED IN REAL TIME
Japan-Croatia: fantasy world tips
Now here are some small ideas for the fantasy world, the exciting game that replaces fantasy football for these Qatar 2022 World Cup. These are the best recommended players for the game: if you have them in your squad, you’d better deploy them in your starting lineup.
Freiburg’s right offensive winger, he has already impressed with his average goal: 2 goals in the first 3 games, and both decisive against Germany and Spain. He’s not starting in these first outings, but who knows if the coach will give us a little thought for the round of 16 given his golden moment. He is a very fast player, good at dribbling and concrete in front of goal. So far, it seems to have been his World Cup, and who knows if he is not yet the determining man for this Japan.
Attacking left winger, he now plays for Antonio Conte’s Tottenham – who knows him very well after his experience at Inter. Perisic is a player we know well in Italy as well: fast, physically strong, good at dribbling, very dangerous in assisting his teammates. The boy kicks both right and left, so he has everything to hurt Japan’s defence. The Croatian player hasn’t yet unlocked himself in this World Cup, but who knows if his time hasn’t come for him: he can bring bonuses, both with an assist and with a goal. And if he’s considered a midfielder on the list, he’s a huge added value.