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Euro 2016 Play-off, first leg - preview and odds: Bosnia and Herzegovina vs. Republic of Ireland


Published on: 09/11/2015

Euro 2016 Play-off, first leg - preview and odds: Bosnia and Herzegovina vs. Republic of Ireland

November 13, 2015 20:45pm – Bilino Polje Stadium

Euro 2016 Qualifier - Play-off

Bosnia and Herzegovina won their last three qualifying games to claim third place in Group B and set up a deciding clash with third-ranked Group D side Republic of Ireland.

Bosnia and Herzegovina looking to make Euro debut

After appearing at the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil, Bosnia and Herzegovina are now looking to qualify for their second-straight major tournament and their first European Championships by seeing off the Republic of Ireland in this two legged play-off match starting on Friday.

The Bosnians enjoyed a strong finish to their qualifying campaign, winning three games in a row to leave them with a total of 17 points, well clear of their nearest challengers Israel.

Mehmed Baždarević’s team have only ever played Ireland once before - a friendly in Dublin back in 2012 that the home side won thanks to a single goal from Shane Long. They go into this game on the back of a four-game unbeaten run at home.

Bosnia and Herzegovina made it to the play-off stage in the Euro 2012 qualifiers but fell to a 6-2 aggregate defeat to Portugal.

Big chance for play-off veterans

Republic of Ireland are no strangers to play-offs having appeared in three UEFA European championship play-offs and three FIFA World Cup deciders. Of those six games, they prevailed twice to make it to the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea and the 2012 Euros in Poland and Ukraine.

Martin O`Neill’s team missed out on automatic qualification when they lost a showdown clash with Poland on the final match day by two goals to one. That defeat handed second place to Polish and condemned the Irish to a major international play-off game for the seventh time in history. Team news

Bosnia’s Muhamed Bešić will be banned for the first leg, while six other players are just a booking away from suspension for the home side.

Ireland also have disciplinary issues with John O`Shea and Jonathan Walters missing through suspension and Seamus Coleman, James McCarthy, Glenn Whelan, Wes Hoolahan and Marc Wilson all just a booking away from a ban.

Recent form (qualifiers)

Bosnia and Herzegovina: WWWLW

Republic of Ireland: LWWWD

Betting odds and tips

Bosnia and Herzegovina have lost just once on home soil in their last ten Euro qualifying games and will be favourites to gain an advantage in the first leg. The Irish have lost two of their last three Euro away game including that vital game in Poland. The home side can be backed at even money with Bet365.

Edin Dzeko bagged seven goal in seven games during qualifying and can be backed at 13/8 to score anytime with Coral.

Published on: 09/11/2015

Any odds displayed within this preview were correct at the time of publishing (09/11/2015 12:14:35) but are subject to change.