Al Ain vs Yokohama Preview: AFC Champions League Final Prediction from ClubSport’s Experts

Dumitru Palanchuk
Dumitru Palanchuk
22 May 2024, 09:14

The second round of the AFC Champions League final between Al Ain and Yokohama will see another intense match at Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium on Saturday, 25th of May. The first leg, held in Japan, saw Yokohama winning after Al Ain opened the score in the beginning of the match. The Japanese side answered with two goals from Kota Watanabe and Asahi Uenaka and coming to the United Arab Emirates with a certain advantage. The match becomes the key clash of the season for both, as the teams are struggling in their domestic championships, with Al Ain being only fourth in the UAE Pro League, while Yokohama is only in 13th place in the J1 standings. As for the Al Ain vs Yokohama prediction, let us first consider the current team news and conditions.

Al Ain Team News

Al Ain concentrated all of its efforts on claiming the AFC Champions League trophy for the second time in its history, after winning the title back in 2003. With the local federation rescheduling several fixtures of the UAE Pro League, Al Ain will only play one match against Al Wahda in 9 days, allowing the team to prepare for the upcoming clash. The first leg saw a pretty much equal game from both sides, with both teams having their chances. However, Al Ain will now have the advantage of playing on their home soil, where the team was able to beat the two heavyweights of Middle East football - Al Hilal (4-2 at home) and Al Nassr (1-0 at home). That is why bookmakers put the team from Abu Dhabi as a favourite if considering Al Ain vs Yokohama odds. Despite not having the best recent results in the domestic championship, Hernan Crespo confirmed that all of the team’s efforts are currently concentrated on winning the AFC Champions League trophy. 

Yokohama Team News

Yokohama travels to the United Arab Emirates with the confidence of having a one-goal advantage but with a worrying away form. Marinos are winless in 5 consecutive away games and facing rising pressure regarding their display in the J1 League. The team is only 13th after 13 rounds with 17 points, which is disturbing, given that in the previous season, Yokohama did not fall from the top-6 during the whole length of the championship. Another important variable is that Marinos will have less time to prepare for the match, and given the sharp differences in climate conditions in Japan and the UAE, this factor may become decisive, even though Harry Kewell has all of his key players available.

Al Ain vs Yokohama Prediction

Al Ain Draw No Bet

Despite the recent setbacks and the loss in the first leg, Al Ain is known for being the most dangerous at Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium. During the playoff stages, the team from Abu Dhabi secured 3 out of 3 wins on their home soil - 2-1 over Nasaf, 1-0 over Al Nassr, and 4-2 over Al Hilal. Given the advantage of having more time for preparation and general struggles that teams from China and Japan experience when playing abroad, especially in the tough UAE climate, Al Ain will have all the chances to emerge a winner in the upcoming match. For this Al Ain vs Yokohama tip, MrPlay gives 1.53.

Both Teams To Score

Yokohama is currently on the streak of 7 consecutive matches, where both teams are featured on the scoresheet. Given that the team does not play well in away matches, having conceded in all playoff appearances outside of their turf, Al Ain will likely have their chances in front of Mariners’s net. At the same time, Al Ain does seem defensively vulnerable in the latest matches, conceding even from the teams from the bottom part of the standings, such as Kalba. Thus, it can be well-expected that both teams will score in the upcoming match, for which MrPlay gives 1.50.

Total Goals Under 3.5

Despite the fact that it is likely that the teams will exchange goals, the stakes of the upcoming match should not be forgotten. Al Ain definitely needs to win back the one goal advantage that Yokohama currently has, but falling into the trap of Mariners counter attacks could be quite dangerous. Given that this is the last match that will decide the winner of the AFC Champions League, a cautious approach from both sides should be expected, for which MrPlay gives 1.55.

Remember to gamble responsibly. Tips provided serve only as a recommendation, not as a call to action. Always rely on your own judgement.