Mexico vs Japan Olympic Games LIVE Football Score 6 Aug 2021
If there was one play that best captured Mexico’s performance in Sunday’s 2-1 loss to Japan in the Olympic soccer tournament, it came in the 53rd minute when forward Diego Lainez dribbled deep into the Japanese end, spun sharply to his left and drove his right foot toward the ball.
He whiffed, hitting only air before stumbling toward the turf as the ball rolled beyond the end line. Lainez swiped at the grass before rising, a look of both frustration and bemusement on his face.
Mexico vs. Japan: Odds, picks and predictions
Odds via Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports’ betting odds for a full list. Lines last updated Thursday at 2:12 p.m. ET.
- Money line: Mexico +150 (bet $100 to win $150) | Japan +170 (bet $100 to win $170) | Draw +250
- Over/Under: 2.5 (O: -130 | U: +105)
If Mexico’s quick start to the tournament had its players thinking about how nice a gold medal might feel around their necks, Japan reminded them there’s a long way still to go, riding goals from Takefusa Kubo and Ritsu Doan in the first 12 minutes to victory before 63,000 empty seats at Saitama Stadium, about 15 miles outside Tokyo.
It’s a rematch from the group stage when Mexico and Japan meet Friday morning in the men’s soccer bronze-medal match at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Both teams battled to 0-0 draws in the semifinals, with Mexico losing to Brazil in a shootout, while Japan fell to Spain on a 115th-minute goal. Japan won the group on the strength of its 2-1 victory against El Tri in the teams’ second game of the tournament, but then the Japanese went to a shootout with New Zealand in the quarterfinals. That game was scoreless after regulation and extra time, while Mexico blasted South Korea 6-3 to reach the semifinals.
Kickoff from Saitama Stadium is set for 7 a.m ET. Caesars Sportsbook lists Mexico as the slight +150 favorite (risk $100 to win $150) on the 90-minute money line in its latest Mexico vs. Japan odds, while Japan is the +170 underdog. The over-under for total goals scored is set at 2.5. Before making any Mexico vs. Japan picks or 2021 Tokyo Olympics predictions, you have to see what consummate soccer insider Martin Green has to say.
After working in the sports betting industry for several years, Green became a professional sports writer and handicapper and has covered the game worldwide. Since then, his European soccer picks have been spot-on. Green has generated nearly $19,000 for $100 bettors since the 2017-18 season, and he has his finger on the pulse of the game all over the globe.
Now, Green has taken a close look at the Japan vs. Mexico matchup and revealed his Olympics soccer best bets. You can head to SportsLine now to see the picks. Here are the Olympic soccer odds and betting trends for Mexico vs. Japan:
- Mexico vs. Japan spread: Japan -0.5 (+155)
- Mexico vs. Japan over-under: 2.5 goals
- Mexico vs. Japan 90-minute money line: Mexico +150, Japan +170, Draw +220
- Mexico: Sebastian Cordova has seven goals in 13 matches with the team.
- Japan: Ritsu Doan has six goals in 10 appearances for the U-23 team.
Why you should back Mexico
El Tri should feel good about its performance against Brazil, holding it without a goal, and will be eager to earn its second Olympics medal. Mexico won gold at London 2012, and it has allowed six goals in the five games here, half of those in the wide-open quarterfinal. It is 8-2-2 in Olympic matches since 2012, outscoring its opponents 27-10, and is 9-3-1 with a 30-11 goal advantage in 2021. The team is built with strength up the middle, with Luis Romo and Henry Martin teaming up in attack, and goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa leading from the back.
Romo has been the focal point from his midifield spot, and he had a goal and an assist in the rout of South Korea. Martin and Francisco Cordova have each scored three times at Tokyo 2020. Romo, 26, tied for the Liga MX lead with 10 assists last season with champion Cruz Azul, while the 28-year-old Martin scored 15 goals for perennial league contender Club America. Romo, Eduardo Aguirre and Alexis Vega all have scored twice at Olympics 2020. Ochoa is a strong presence in the net and is protected by young stars Johan Vazquez and Cesar Montes.
Why you should back Japan
The Japanese squad has been organized and efficient, allowing just two goals in the five games. It held Mexico off the score sheet for the first 85 minutes in the July 25 win and did not concede to Spain until late in extra time. The loss to the Spaniards snapped a nine-game unbeaten run that saw Japan yield just three goals while scoring 24. This team is built for defense, with backs Maya Yoshida and Hiroki Sakai joining fierce defensive midfielder Wataru Endo as the three over-age players on the roster. Japan is 7-3-4 in its last three Olympics appearances.
Japan also is seeking revenge against Mexico after El Tri ousted it from London 2012 on its way to the gold medal. It will have the entire nation behind it and knows from last month’s victory that it can take the bronze medal if it executes the same way. Japan took a 2-0 lead in the first 12 minutes then sat back to defend. Mexico controlled the ball for 62 percent of the match but had just four shots on target. Takefusa Kubo, a 20-year-old prospect who is trying to earn playing time with Real Madrid, scored the first goal. That was the second of his three in the tournament.