World Cup Preview – Group H | Japan v Poland – Senegal v Colombia

Japan, Senegal and Colombia all go into the final game in Group H looking to seal passage into the last 16.

Poland have already been eliminated, with Japan and Senegal currently occupying the top two spots on four points – ahead of Colombia on three.

Top-of-the-table Japan face Poland Volgograd knowing victory will see them through, indeed the only way the Japanese won’t progress is they lose and Senegal v Colombia is a draw.

Despite only needing a draw, Japan coach Akira Nishino insists they are going all out for the three points, saying:  “We are still going for top of the group.”

Senegal are in charge of their own fate, and know that avoiding defeat will be enough to take them through but their coach Aliou Cisse is looking for an improved performance.

“We need to improve the impact. We need to be more aggressive on the ball,” Cisse said. “At this level it goes very fast. We need to have more concentration. We need to be more rigorous.”

A draw might be enough for Colombia, but coach Jose Peckerman insists they have to go for a win.

“We need to play at an extraordinary level to beat a tough team,” he said. “Mentally, we’re in a good place, but we need to continue to improve, because we are ambitious, and we hope to continue in this World Cup.”

See below for a preview on the games, including predictions from former England and Tottenham midfielder Andy Gray and our own Football Insider Graeme Bailey and bet365’s Steve Freeth.

Japan 15:00 Poland
Volgograd Arena, Volgograd
Live on BBC

Japan: Eiji Kawashima; Hiroki Sakai, Maya Yoshida, Gen Shoji, Yuto Nagatomo; Makoto Hasebe, Gaku Shibasaki; Genki Haraguchi, Shinji Kagawa, Takashi Inui; Yuya Osako

Poland: Lukasz Fabianski; Lukas Piszczek, Kamil Glik, Jan Bednarek; Bartosz Bereszynski, Grzegorz Krychowiak, Jacek Goralski, Maciej Pybus; Piotr Zielinski, Robert Lewandowski, Kamil Grosicki

KEY FACT: Japan hold the record for the most World Cup matches played without receiving a red card – 19
Match odds from bet365: JAPAN 31/20 DRAW 11/5 POLAND 21/10
bet365 Pick: Under 2.5 goals @3/4
ANDY SAYS: I can see Poland finishing with a win here and just sneaking the win…1-2
GRAEME SAYS: Tough call but I think Poland will get the win…0-2
FOOTBALLIndex – One to follow: Robet Lewandowski – he has to sign off the World Cup with a goal

Senegal 15:00 Colombia
Samara Arena, Samara
Live on BBC



KEY FACT: Senegal have neither won nor lost a FIFA World Cup match by more than one goal
Match odds from bet365: SENEGAL 18/5 DRAW 27/10 COLOMBIA 17/20
bet365 Pick: Colombia to win & over 2.5 goals @21/10
ANDY SAYS: I see Colombia edging this one…0-2
GRAEME SAYS: Tough call, but I see it playing out as a draw…1-1
FOOTBALLIndex – One to follow: Radamel Falcao – starting to show some form and so there is real value

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