Uzbekistan’s last official matches were in mid-June as part of the qualifiers for the Asian Cup that will be held in Qatar this summer. They comfortably qualified for the finals, finishing top of their group with a clean sheet and not even conceding a goal (3-0-0 record, 9-0 goal difference). Since then, they played 4 friendlies, and won against Cameroon and Kazakhstan, drew with Russia and lost to Costa Rica. The Slovenian coach Srečko Katanec has been sitting on its bench since August 2021, and majority of players, 16 out of 24 are play in the domestic league, but have a few “„legionaries” and of course the most famous is striker of Spezia,Eldor Shomurodov.
Bolivia finished in penultimate place in the qualifiers in the Latin American zone, missing out on the World Cup for the umpteenth time. Only under the safety of the altitude, they have been competitive (4-1-5 record), while away from home picked up just two points in 10 matches (0-2-8). They seeks for a new beginning and for this they hired a 60-year-old Argentinian Gustavo Costas, who has recorded significant success at club level, winning titles in the leagues of Peru (Alianza Lima), Ecuador (Barcelona Guayaquil), Colombia (Santa Fe) and Paraguay (Cerro Porteno). In his debut in November’s friendly against Peru, Bolivia was defeated by Peru. There is a mood for renewal in the national Team, and the average age of the players called for this match is only 23 years. Many key players like Juan Arce (68/12), Justiniano (44/2), Bejarano (40/3), Saavedra (38/4), Ramallo (34/6), Haquin (30/1), and Villarroel (28/3) are out of the team.
Uzbekistan has a good defensive function and emphasizes defense, in contrast to the more offensively minded Bolivia, who has a lot of problems in the defense. This match is played in Jeddah (Saudi Arabia) and expect Uzbekistan to win the match.