In the third round of the AFC zone, only the top two teams from each group will advance to the World Cup finals. In Group B, the Saudis are leading the charge with 19 points from eight games. A victory against China will guarantee their participation in the Qatar showpiece.
China, meanwhile, have endured a difficult campaign and have been eliminated from the fray already. They're second from bottom in the standings, with just one win and five points from eight games.
China vs Saudi Arabia Head-To-Head
There have been 19 previous clashes between the two teams. The spoils have been equally shared, with both teams winning seven times against the other. In the October reverse, Saudi Arabia secured a nervy 3-2 victory on home soil.
China Form Guide (all competitions): L-L-D-D-L.
Saudi Arabia Form Guide (all competitions): L-W-L-D-L.
China vs Saudi Arabia Team News
The Dragon's Team have called up 24 players for this month's double-header against Saudi Arabia and Oman.
Interestingly, all players ply their trade in China, except for Zurich Grasshoppers' Li Lei. Espanyol forward Wu Lei giving the upcoming games a miss to fight for a place in his club team. Beijing Guoan forward Zhang Yuning might lead the line for The Dragons in Lei's absence.
Unavailable: Wu Lei.
The Green Falcons have called up 26 players to face China and Australia. Much like the former, all of them are based in Saudi Arabia.
Al Hilal hitman Saleh Al-Shehri will look to add to his tally of seven goals from 14 games. Firas Al-Buraikan, who boasts six in 19, is also available for back-up.
China vs Saudi Arabia Predicted XI
China (4-2-3-1): Yan Junling; Zhang Linpeng, Zhu Chenjie, Yu Dabao, Wang Shenchao; Xu Xin, Wu Xi; Hao Junmin, Dai Weijun, Liu Binbin; Zhang Yuning.
Saudi Arabia (4-2-3-1): Mohammed Al-Owais; Saud Abdulhamid, Abdulelah Al-Amri, Ahmed Sharahili, Yasser Al-Shahrani; Ali Al-Hassan, Salman Al-Faraj; Fahad Al-Muwallad, Mohamed Kanno, Salem Al-Dawsari; Saleh Al-Shehri.
China vs Saudi Arabia Prediction
Saudi have a good record against China in recent years, winning three of their last five clashes. With World Cup qualification to be confirmed with a win, they should go all guns blazing once again.
Prediction: China 1-2 Saudi Arabia.