Australia vs Japan
AFC Asian Cup 2011 Final
Khalifa International Stadium, Doha- 29/1/11- 18:00 KO
Japan will be bidding to pick up a fourth Asian Cup trophy when they meet Holger Osieck’s Australia in the finals. Bet on Australia vs Japan in the AFC Asian Cup Final 2011 with Bodog after reading our preview at Sportsbookie.com.
Australia made a mockery of Uzbekistan’s title ambitions as they thrashed the Central Asians 6-0 in the semifinal. By doing so, the Socceroos have reached their maiden final and will be favourites because of the experience their players possess in comparison to their young opponents from the Far East.
Brisbane Roar’s Matt McKay was rewarded for his excellent performance in the quarterfinal against Iraq with a spot on the left wing against Uzbekistan despite Brett Emerton being available to select after returning from suspension. McKay is likely to play in the final too as Holger Osieck has said that he will reward good performances.
With McKay set to start, the other option for Osieck to include Emerton is to leave out Brett Holman from the squad, assuming the Gaffer persists with his 4-4-2.
Australia form- last five games- most recent first- Australia scorers in brackets-
Uzbekistan 0-6 Iraq ( Harry Kewell, S. Ognenovski, David Carney, Brett Emerton, Robbie Kruse, Carl Valeri)
Australia 1-0 Iraq ( Harry Kewell)
Australia 1-0 Bahrain ( Mile Jedinak)
Australia 1-1 Korea ( Mile Jedinak)
India 0-4 Australia ( Cahill *2, Harry Kewell, Brett Holman)
Japan snatched narrow wins over Qatar in the quarterfinal and South Korea in the semifinal to reach the finals of the tournament.
Japanese centre half Maya Yoshida missed the semifinal win over Korea due to suspension but is expected to take his spot in defence for the final against the Socceroos.
Japan – last few games – most recent game on top
v South Korea ( won on penalties)- Maeda, Hosagai
v. Qatar (Win 3-2) Kagawa*2, Inoha
v. Saudi (Win 5-0) Maeda*2, Okazaki*3
v. Syria (Win 2-1) Honda, Hasebe
v. Jordan (Draw 1-1) Yoshida
Verdict:- These are the two highest ranked teams in the AFC. Australia’s physical game, plus their water tight defence, gives them the edge here.
Australia 2-1 Japan ( Kewell, Neill/ Kagawa)