FINLAND welcome Republic of Ireland on Wednesday night in the Nations League. Daniel McCulloch (@DMcCulloch1984) shares his favourite fancies.
Finland vs Republic of Ireland | Wednesday 14th October 2020, 19:45 | Sky Sports
I imagine few are expecting a high scoring encounter in Helsinki this evening. It is fair to say that Ireland have been a tough watch in recent years and given the volume of players – particularly attacking ones – they are missing for COVID related reasons, I do not expect an attack-minded performance from Stephen Kenny’s men.
Ireland’s last two matches have finished 0-0 but those results are not outliers. There were just 12 goals in their eight qualification games for Euro 2020 and they only managed to score seven of those themselves, three of which were against Gibraltar.
Additionally, they only scored once in four games in the first edition of the Nations League and have found the net just once in three matches in this campaign. In total, they have scored in just four of their last seven away games and I struggle to see them causing too many problems for a resolute Finish side.
Finland have already qualified for Euro 2020 (which will now take place in 2021), which is the first time they have ever been to a major tournament. In doing so, they only conceded in one of their five home matches, a 2-1 defeat to Italy. They managed to keep clean sheets in victories over both Greece and Bosnia and Herzegovina, both of whom would give Ireland a very tough game.
While they did lose at home to a late Kieffer Moore goal against Wales but I don’t think this current Ireland team is capable of causing them the number of problems that Welsh side could.
In terms of a betting angle, the bookies are well aware of how few goals are scored in Ireland matches, with Under 1.5 Goals a best price of 13/10. I don’t see Ireland scoring here so rather than take that bet, I am going to back both No Goalscorer, which is 5/1 with SkyBet and 1-0 to Finland which is the same price with the same firm.
I don’t expect a thriller in Helsinki so this is probably one to watch on Livescore!