Uruguay vs Brazil 2018 World Cup Qualifiers – South America. Date: Thursday, 23rd March 2017 Kick off at 23:00 UK/ 00:00 CET Venue: Estadio Centenario.
The top two teams in South American WC Qualification are set to take on each other in the most entertaining clash of the round on Thursday evening in the Uruguayan capital.
It will be very interesting to see if Brazil will be able to maintain the amazing form and increase the gap at the top of the standings.
It will be easier said than done because Uruguay have won eight consecutive matches on the home pitch in qualifications.
The team led by Oscar Tabarez is more than solid at the back whenever they play in front of their fans where they kept six straight clean sheets before the 2-1 win over Ecuador in the last home match.
Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez have been enjoying tremendous campaigns in PSG and Barcelona and they will definitely put Brazil’s defense on a serious test this Thursday.
Brazil’s defensive line has been rock-solid in the recent period. Tite’s squad did not concede a single goal in five straight matches, including the friendly with Colombia in January this year.
Brazilians were super impressive in the last couple of qualifying matches having demolished Argentina 3-0 and Peru 0-2 in November last year.
Uruguay vs Brazil: Head to head
Brazil lead the tie by four wins and they have not suffered a single defeat to Uruguay since July 2001.
Brazil netted at least two goals in each of the last five matches with Uruguay which certainly gives a decent value to Brazil Over 1.5 team goals bet at the odds of 6/5.
Uruguay vs Brazil: Prediction
We just have no other option but to back goals in the clash between such strong attacking teams.
Edinson Cavani will be the first option for the anytime goalscorer in Uruguay, while Willian, who scored a goal for Chelsea in the visit to Stoke City last weekend might be worthy call to find the back of the net for Brazil.
Argentina vs Chile 2018 World Cup Qualifiers – South America. Date: Thursday, 23rd March 2017 Kick off at 23:30 UK/ 00:30 CET Venue: Estadio Monumental Antonio Vespucio Liberti.
Argentina have had a rollercoaster campaign in this term of South American WC Qualification.
We just can’t imagine the World Cup without the best player in the world Lionel Messi, but Argentine’s qualification is severely compromised since the two-time World champions currently sit at the 5th position in the standings.
Edgardo Bauza’s men will thus host Chile in a super important match on Thursday evening in Buenos Aires. The victory would see Gauchos overtaking their opponents in the fourth position.
The team managed to bounce back after a devastating 3-0 defeat to Brazil with the impressive performance against Colombia.
Lionel Messi broke the deadlock, while Lucas Pratto and Angel di Maria also got their names on the score-sheet.
The Copa America winners have not been enjoying much better campaign of their own either. The team led by the Spanish manager Juan Antonio Pizzi has been struggling a lot to find the right shape at the start of the campaign.
The last couple of matches have, however, seen a notable rise in form, especially at the back because Chile remained unbeaten in last five matches.
Argentina vs Chile: Head to head
Argentine fans can still remember the painful June night when Gauchos lost the Copa America final after penalty shootout.
Lionel Messi was among the ones who missed from the spot and Chileans lifted the silverware.
Argentina have generally been the more successful wide winning 12 out of 21 games with Chile.
Argentina vs Chile: Prediction
The hosts are 1/2 favourites to win the match. It’s hard to judge the value because Chile are everything but a naive side.
On the other hand, Chile’s star boys Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal have been far away from their best shape.
Knowing that the hosts have the imperative to win and that they will play in front of their fans, we’ll back the home win with higher stakes at 1/2 odds.
Venezuela vs Peru 2018 World Cup Qualifiers – South America. Date: Thursday, 23rd March 2017 Kick off at 23:30 UK/ 00:30 CET Venue: Estadio Monumental de Maturin.
Whereas Venezuela lost all hopes for making it to the World Cup in Russia long time ago, Peru still do have some theoretical chances of making an upset and joining the battle in the final six games of the competition.
Venezuela’s main problems pop out at the back. They have always had huge troubles with proper center backs which kills the good job done on some occasions at the other end.
Rafael Dudamel’s side took no more than five points so far in the competition. This, however, includes the impressive 5-0 win over fellow strugglers Bolivia in the last home game.
Peru are five points behind Argentina in the fifth position and staying alive will require three points from Estadio Monumental de Maturin.
The Argentine manager Ricardo Gareca also has great issues with the defensive line which failed to keep a clean sheet in a single of their last five matches in South American WC Qualification.
Venezuela vs Peru: Head to head
Interestingly, Peru lead the head to head tie by only a single win and they never managed to see off Venezuela on the road.
Venezuela won one of the rare points just against Peru in March last year when they were seconds away from snatching the away win in Lima.
Venezuela vs Peru: Prediction
The match has a much greater significance for the visitors, but we can’t back them to pick up three points as they never got the victory in Venezuela.
We’ll go for goals instead since both sides have been super easy to break down.
Colombia vs Bolivia 2018 World Cup Qualifiers – South America. Date: Thursday, 23rd March 2017 Kick off at 20:30 UK/ 21:30 CET Venue: Estadio Metropolitano Roberto Melendez.
Colombia will have an imperative to pick up a much-important three points as the South American WC Qualification return to action this mid-week.
The hosts have been winless in last four qualifiers and the poor run dropped them out of the top five positions. Coming into this game, Jose Pekerman has no room for error against Bolivia whatsoever.
Truth be told, the Colombians did have a kind of tough schedule in the last couple of rounds.
Moreover, Pekerman’s men failed to find the back of the net in consecutive fixtures with Chile, Argentina and Brazil.
The Argentine manager will face huge troubles ahead of the clash with Bolivia because his key man in the final third Carlos Bacca skipped Milan’s match with Genoa due to injury. While James Rodrigues keep warming the bench at Real Madrid week after week.
Luckily for Colombians, they will take on one of the weakest defensive lines in South America. Bolivia have been very easy to break down since the very start of the competition.
The team led by Mauricio Soria have lost 12 consecutive matches on the road having conceded at least three goals in five of the last seven fixtures during the process.
Colombia vs Bolivia: Head to head
The head to head stats absolutely go in Colombia’s favour since they took eight victories in 13 matches.
This includes four wins on the trot ahead of the 14th meeting with Bolivia. The first match in this term of qualifications has seen Pekerman’s men winning 2-3 in La Paz thanks to the substitute Edwin Cardona who notched the winner in the second minute of the stoppage time.
Colombia vs Bolivia: Prediction
The bookies favour the hosts to win the match at 1/6 which is obviously not worth taking at such low odds.
Instead, we’ll go with the hosts to boost up the confidence ahead of the meeting with Ecuador and back them to score three goals or more at 5/6.
Colombia vs Bolivia: Bet Tips
The first betting prediction will be Colombia -1 handicap at 1.45 with Unibet.
The second bet is Colombia Over 2.5 team goals at the odds of 1.83 with Bet365.
UAE vs Japan 2018 World Cup Qualifiers – Asia Date: Thursday, 23rd March 2017 Kick-off at 15:30 UK / 16:30 CET Venue: Hazza bin Zayed Stadium (Al Ain).
It is a promising start for the Emirates in the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers. After the first five matches, they are fourth in the group with a point deficit from the league leaders. Alternatively, this is a tricky and exciting affair as four teams – Saudi Arabia, Japan, Australia and UAE are in with an equal chance to make it into the top two.
UAE started the group phase with a comeback win against Japan by a 2-1 margin away from home. They lost 1-0 to Australia in the very next match before getting back to winning ways against Thailand. The pattern continues with a heavy 3-0 loss at Saudi Arabia followed up by a 2-0 home win against Iraq.
Japan on the other hand, haven’t looked back since the opening day defeat against UAE. They picked up 3 wins and a draw in the next four to put themselves in a strong position for automatic qualification.
UAE vs Japan: Head-to-head
The UAE fans have ample reasons to feel confident as their team often finds a way to trouble Japan. In the last 7 meetings between the two, UAE won 4 times against Japan’s 2 wins.
Japan haven’t won in their two trips to the Emirates for World Cup qualifying matches. Both matches end in stalemates. However, the most recent one was in 1997.
UAE vs Japan: Prediction
UAE under the management of natural born coach Mahdi Ali, has so far shown that they won’t be intimidated by the higher ranked teams in the zone. They have quite a few experienced campaigners in their ranks. And abundance of talent in the form of Omar Abdulrahman and Ahmed Khalil.
Japan will go in as favourites, but UAE will be out there to spoil the party.
Qatar vs Iran 2018 World Cup Qualifiers – Asia Date: Thursday, 23rd March 2017 Kick-off at 16:00 UK / 17:00 CET Venue: Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium. Doha.
Qatar have plenty of ground to cover as they prepare to welcome the group leaders Iran for the World Cup qualifier on Thursday evening.
With 4 points from 5 matches, Qatar are fifth in the Group A with only China behind them. Iran at the top of the table have 11 points, while Korea on second have 10. While Uzbekistan on third, the play-off spot has 9 points which is the realistic target for Qatar under the current circumstances.
However, getting points against a team like Iran is massive task. Anyhow a defeat here will abruptly bring Qatar’s qualification hopes to an end.
Qatar started the qualification campaign with three consecutive defeats. They registered their first win at home against Syria by a narrow 1-0 margin. They had a real chance to strengthen their position against a struggling China, but poor finishing saw the match ending in a goal-less draw.
Iran are the only unbeaten team in the Group A with 3 wins and 2 draws to their name from the 5 matches so far. They won all their three home matches, while settling for goal-less draws in two away fixtures. Interestingly, Iran are yet to concede a goal during the period.
Qatar vs Iran: Head-to-head
Iran are unbeaten in their last 7 matches against Qatar with 3 wins and 4 draws. All the wins came in the latest three meetings with clean sheets, including the 2-0 win at home in the reverse leg of the current campaign.
Only one of those 7 matches have seen over 2.5 goals. And both teams scored on two occasions.
In their 8 previous visits to Qatar, Iran picked up 4 wins and were beaten twice, with another two matches ending in stalemates. Once again, 6 of those matches saw less than 3 goals.
Qatar vs Iran: Prediction
Iran is a team built on a strong defensive foundation which have proved too hard for teams to break down. Qatar recently failed to break through Uzbekistan whose playing philosophy is similar to their Thursday’s opponent.
Combining these with the head-to-head record and form analysis, this match is expected to see few goals. And with confidence on their side, Iran are the most likely candidate to Knick a narrow win. We recommend brave punters to go for a correct score of 1-0 away win, which is offered at 6.00 odds with Unibet