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World Cup 2014 betting: Japan odds to win group C

Japan is a threat to advance in Group C, but they are 150-1 long shot in World Cup 2014 odds overall.

Chris McGrath

Japan comes into this World Cup with a solid and very tactical squad that has a good chance to repeat their 2010 performance when they advanced to the round of 16.

They are not in the toughest group with Colombia, Ivory Coast and Greece and they are tied with Ivory Coast with the second-best betting odds to win the group.

Japan won the last Asian Cup and they easily qualified for the World Cup, but one big blow for them is that their veteran captain Makoto Hasebe is recovering from a knee operation in February and may not be fully fit.

Japan Odds to win World Cup 2014: +1500
Japan Odds to win Group C: +375
See current odds on all teams and all games

Japan is a very smart team that plays a great tactical game and while they do not have a great attack, they are solid at controlling the ball, which will be key in group play.

The squad did not play cupcakes in friendly tune-ups for the World Cup and they have looked impressive. They played to a draw against Holland, beat a good Belgium team, and beat New Zealand.

Japan is not good at keeping more physical teams out of their box, which may hurt them facing Colombia and Ivory Coast.

World Cup Prediction for Japan

Japan is a tough team to predict, as they may lack the world-class talent that other teams in the group have, but their style of play will frustrate their opponents.

They will not be blanked this summer in group play, but they will also not advance to the last 16. Japan will not beat Colombia and the solid Greek defense will give them trouble. They have a good shot to win the Ivory Coast match, but a draw is more possible.

How Japan got to the World Cup

After losing their first two World Cup qualifying matches Japan only lost one more in their next seven. After losing to a good Korea DPR team and Uzbekistan the squad beat the teams they should have with the exception of the big upset losing on the road against Jordan.

They had four clean sheets in their last eight matches and overall in qualifying they had five wins, three losses, and two draws.

World Cup Qualifying Results

15/11/11 Korea DPR 1 - 0 Japan

29/02/12 Japan 0 - 1 Uzbekistan

03/06/12 Japan 3 - 0 Oman

08/06/12 Japan 6 - 0 Jordan

12/06/12 Australia 1 - 1 Japan

11/09/12 Japan 1 - 0 Iraq

14/11/12 Oman 1 - 2 Japan

26/03/13 Jordan 2 - 1 Japan

04/06/13 Japan 1 - 1 Australia

11/06/13 Iraq 0 - 1 Japan

World Cup Group Play Schedule

14/06/14 Ivory Coast vs. Japan - Arena Pernambuco

19/06/14 Japan vs. Greece - Estadio das Dunas

24/06/14 Japan vs. Colombia - Arena Pantanal

Team Key Players

Shinji Kagawa FW Manchester United - He is the best offensive threat the team has and he is very creative and dangerous off the wings.

Shinji Okazaki MF Mainz 05 - The offensive minded midfielder, must play well on both sides of the pitch this summer and he led Japan in qualifying with eight goals.

Keisuke Honda MF AC Milan - another attacking midfielder that can play striker as well.