IRELAND welcome Wales to the Aviva Stadium on Sunday. Marcus Ally (@Marcus_Ally_4) oversees the Nations League encounter.
Republic of Ireland vs Wales | Sunday 11th October 2020, 14:00 | Sky Sports
On the comedown of Ireland’s penalty shootout heartbreak on Thursday evening in Slovakia, the Republic host a Wales side who have a 100% record in Group 4 of League B of the Nations League.
Stephen Kenny’s hosts endured a goalless draw in after extra time. Matt Doherty of Tottenham and Alan Browne of Preston missed from 12 yards seeing Slovakia progress for place in Euro 2021 via the play-off final.
This is now looking very even with the bookmakers; Wales have been made narrow favourites.
Ireland have failed to score in their last 210 minutes of football, seeing them hold on for a lot of stalemates, seeing nine in their last 14.
Six of the last nine head-to-head encounters between these two have seen a 0-0 half time scoreline with a Both Teams To Score no punt coming in on seven of those nine occasions.
Wales had kept four straight clean sheets before their humbling 3-0 defeat against England on Thursday, further suggesting that this will not be the highest scoring affair.
One to watch
Daniel James did not feature in the England game possibly with this match in mind. The Manchester United man’s pace could be crucial in the absence of the likes of Gareth Bale and Harry Wilson, he will add variety to the attacking contingent that may be without Cardiff City’s Kieffer Moore who was forced off due to injury.
Posing a different threat to John Egan and Shane Duffy than the physical one they might have been preparing for.
James managed a respectable four goals and six assists in his debut campaign at Old Trafford but has come under a bit of fire post-lockdown for being too one dimensional, not offering a lot to the team outside his blistering pace. This match provides a platform to show his manager he has what it takes to get back into the regular first team fold and push Wales towards promotion to League A.
Ryan Giggs’ men’s performance on Thursday did not fill me with confidence for this encounter despite their Nations League form, the wounded animal that is Ireland right now will be looking to bounce back.
The unders market looks like the place to be with both sides having extremely impressive recent records of shutting out the opposite, furthermore with them both drawing a blank on Thursday.