World Cup 2022 Republic of Ireland vs Luxembourg: Preview, Predictions
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The Republic of Ireland aims to bounce back from their opening-day 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifying loss when they host minnows Luxembourg on Saturday. The match will take place at the Aviva Stadium.
The Boys in Green were beaten 3-2 by Serbia on Wednesday night despite taking an early lead. Aleksandar Mitrovic came off the bench in the second half to net a brace and condemn the visitors.
As disappointing as Stephen Kenny's side were, they'll be confident of getting their campaign up and running against a side languishing 98th in the FIFA rankings, Sportskeeda cites.
Die Roten Löwen were in action on Wednesday night against next year's hosts Qatar in an international friendly. The Europeans went down 1-0 in a dour loss.
They're the team with the unwanted distinction of participating in the most World Cup qualifiers without ever making it to the finals. They have been drawn in another daunting group that also features reigning European champions Portugal.
Date and time: Kick-off is at 7.45 pm on Saturday, March 27, at Lansdowne Road.
Television channel: Sky Sports
Streaming: Sky Sports subscribers can stream the match live via Sky Go
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Republic of Ireland: Team News
While Kenny is yet to confirm if there were any injuries from Wednesday’s defeat in Belgrade, it looked as if everyone came through unscathed with only Aaron Connolly going off with a knock which looked to be nothing more than cramp.
That means the manager will likely go into Saturday’s match with the same squad to choose from and some encouraging signs from the likes of Alan Browne, Callum Robinson and Josh Cullen.
Whether Kenny sticks with Mark Travers in goal after his error for Serbia’s second might be up for some debate but, given that the alternatives are the equally inexperienced Kieran O’Hara or the uncapped Gavin Bazunu, it is very likely that the Bournemouth man will keep his place and it will be up to Kenny, his staff and team to ensure the young goalkeeper can forget about Wednesday.
Jeff Hendrick, who came on for Jayson Molumby after an hour, may get the nod to start. Although Molumby did look comfortable in the midfield Kenny admitted afterwards that he had “run out of gas” after 60 minutes which is an indicator of how little game time he has had at Preston North End where he is currently on loan from Brighton, Irish Times cites.
Injured: Kevin Long, Conor Hourihane, James McCarthy, and Harry Arter
Unavailable: Derrick Williams
Luxembourg: Team News
Veteran players such as Lars Krogh Gerson, Laurent Jans, Chris Phillips, Stefano Bensi and Maurice Deville have been recalled. Meanwhile, Lucas Fox is the only player in line to make his debut.
Dirk Carlson is a notable absentee for Luxembourg as he's currently injured.
Injured: Dirk Carlson
Republic of Ireland vs Luxembourg Predicted XI
Republic of Ireland (3-5-2): Mark Travers; Seamus Coleman, Dara O'Shea, Ciaran Clark; Matt Doherty, Jayson Molumby, Josh Cullen, Alan Browne, Enda Stevens; Callum Robinson, Aaron Connolly.
Luxembourg (4-2-3-1): Anthony Moris; Laurent Jans, Maxime Chanot, Lars Krogh Gerson, Mica Pinto; Christopher Martins, Vincent Thill; Maurice Deville, Danel Sinani, Florian Bohnert; Edvin Muratovic.
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Predictions: Republic of Ireland 2-0 Luxembourg
The Republic of Ireland put in a valiant effort vs Serbia, but despite taking the lead Stephen Kenny’s side ultimately fell to a 3-2 defeat in their opening Group A encounter. Scoring twice in Serbia will have given Kenny’s men confidence however and they’ll be looking to take that positive into this home clash with Luxembourg.
The visitors prepared for this encounter by undertaking a friendly match against Qatar this past Wednesday, which they lost 1-0. Whilst Luxembourg has proven themselves as capable of causing a surprise away from home in the past, after beating Montenegro 1-2 last October in the UEFA Nations League, the Republic of Ireland boasts a vastly superior squad in terms of ability and strength in depth. With home advantage also in their favor, a comprehensive Republic or Ireland triumph by at least two clear goals looks very much on the cards.
Ireland vs Luxembourg Betting Odds
Republic of Ireland must bounce back quickly from losing their opening World Cup 2022 qualifier when they host minnows Luxembourg on Saturday night.
Wednesday’s 3-2 defeat in Serbia was an early blow to their qualification chances and they cannot afford to slip up in their first home match of the campaign.
The Irish are not prolific scorers so a home win and under 3.5 goals at 19/20 is our opening Republic of Ireland vs Luxembourg prediction.
A Look At Republic of Ireland’s Betting Odds
The Irish made a perfect start to their campaign when they took an 18th-minute lead in Belgrade, with Alan Browne ending the team’s goal drought which had lasted more than 11 hours of football.
Dusan Vlahovic equalised five minutes before the break before substitute Aleksandar Mitrovic produced a high-quality double to put Serbia in control.
Substitute James Collins’ late strike was not enough to save the visitors and Republic boss Stephen Kenny is still awaiting his first win after nine games in charge.
There were elements of the performance with which he could be justifiably pleased and the Irish felt they should have had a penalty at 1-1 but there is now little margin for error as they seek a first competitive win since June 2019.
This is a team which looks short on attacking quality at this level, as shown when they managed just one goal from six Nations League matches against Wales, Finland and Bulgaria.
They may take their time to break the minnows down and 3/1 for a drawn first half and then a home win is a tempting option in the Republic of Ireland vs Luxembourg odds.
A Look At Luxembourg’s Betting Odds
Luxembourg are yet to start their qualifying campaign but prepared for their trip to Dublin with a 1-0 defeat against World Cup hosts Qatar in Hungary on Wednesday.
Luxembourg struck the woodwork in the first half at least and are expected to give a decent account of themselves here.
They collected 10 points from their C-level Nations League group, including a 2-1 away win against group winners Montenegro, while they held out for an hour in a friendly against Austria in November before eventually being beaten 3-0.
Luxembourg’s 3-2 defeat in Serbia in a Euro 2020 qualifier also suggests they can compete at a similar standard as Saturday’s opponents so it would be a surprise if the Irish have things all their own way.
With that in mind, let’s go for a 1-0 home win at 5/1 as our final Republic of Ireland vs Luxembourg prediction.
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