CAN Northern Ireland build on their superb win in Hungary last month? Chris Graham (@chrisgraham79) previews their match against Faroe Islands.
Northern Ireland v Faroe Islands | 19:45 | Sky Sports 5
The natural place to start with this game is the superb victory for Northern Ireland last month in Hungary. Does this signal an upturn in the sides fortunes? After all, Hungary performed with great credit in their World Cup qualifying campaign, finishing 3rd ahead of Turkey and just two points off a play-off place. Michael O’Neill’s side meanwhile had a miserable time qualifying for Brazil, with just one win in 10 games. Those 10 games included a defeat and a draw against Luxembourg. Are they over that slump?
In Brazil qualifying, the Faroe Islands performed exactly to type. Hammered on the odd occasion, a collection of 2-3 goal defeats and a surprisingly positive result (in this case a 1-1 draw with Kazakhstan). They kicked off their Euro 2016 qualifying campaign with a decent 3-1 loss to Finland which indicates a similar campaign may await them.
Northern Ireland are the kind of side you should side with at massive odds (wins over Spain, Denmark and Poland, and draws against Italy and Portugal indicate that) but they are also a team you should take on when their opponents are a big price (losses to Luxembourg, Azerbaijan and Estonia indicate that). Oh, and did we mention their record against the Faroe Islands? They’ve played them four times and failed to win on two occasions. Hmmm…
In summary, we’re all expecting Northern Ireland to win on Saturday, but to throw them in your accumulator makes no sense at the odds available. Instead a small stake 3/1 poke with Coral on the Faroes with a goal start makes common sense. Northern Ireland have let down odds-on backers on numerous occasions in the last five years, if it happens again we’re there to profit.
Northern Islands v Faroe Islands – Faroe Islands +1 (3/1 Coral)