ROSS CASEY (@RossCasey24) shares his betting views on tonight's international friendly between Turkey and the Republic of Ireland.
Turkey v Republic of Ireland | Friday 23rd March 2018, 17:30
Ireland were nothing short of woeful across their two play-off ties against Denmark in an attacking sense. They came away with a 0-0 draw in the away leg despite having just 30% of the possession in that game and then they were turned over by a Christian Eriksen masterclass, losing 5-1 in the second leg.
That anti-football of Martin O'Neill won't be tolerated going forward and it is good to see eight uncapped players given the chance to impress in the squad this week with the likes of Scott Hogan and Matt Doherty in particular looking good in The Championship this season.
I expect Turkey to again have most of the ball, but Ireland do have a surprisingly good record away from home at present. Their only loss in their last seven on the road came on neutral ground as they fell foul to Mexico.
The betting angles
Both of these sides are sitting out the World Cup and Turkey were particularly disappointing. They finished fourth in their group – five points adrift second place and seven off shock group winners Iceland.
They have now failed to win each of their last four matches, losing three of those, including a terrible 3-2 home defeat to Albania in November.
Their squad still holds plenty of talent however, Hakan Calhanoglu is still a massive threat from midfield and in-form Everton striker Cenk Tosun is likely to lead the line.
For me, the Turkish side have had months to get over their terrible 2018 qualifying campaign an can look towards the European Champiuonships now afresh, whilst I feel that a young looking Ireland will struggle to impress – with goals a real issue for Martin O'Neill's side and the terrible play-off performance still hurting.
Turkey v Republic of Ireland – Turkey to win (100/101 Marathon)