Ivory Coast: The Elephants look favourites to qualify for the round of 16 for the first time, considering they are not placed in the ‘Group of Death’ like previous occasions. 23rd ranked Ivory Coast relies heavily on their main players like Didier Drogba, Yaya Toure and Salomon Kalou to perform well. The highest ranked African side made a great impact during their qualifying stage of the World Cup and will be expected to continue their momentum.
Japan: Known for their conservative and school-book play, Japan is slowly adopting a more aggressive approach. With heavyweights like Shinji Kagawa and Shinji Okazaki, 46th ranked Japan is expected to deliver a better their record of reaching the round of 16 in their fifth World Cup appearance. Alberto Zaccheroni’s young side appears to be a fairly competitive side on their given day.
Total matches played: 3
Ivory Coast 1 Win, Japan 2 Wins, 0 Draws