Can the Republic of Ireland still qualify for Euro 2016?
After narrowly missing out on automatic qualification to the Euro 2016 finals in France next summer, Republic of Ireland boss, Martin O’Neill, has a difficult task on his hands in steering his side to victory this term. The Irish face 2014 World Cup representatives, Bosnia & Herzegovina, on route to achieving entry to the tournament via a last chance saloon qualifier next month.
Although the Boys in Green may have only just fallen short behind both Germany and Poland – two sides many lower placed national teams could easily slip up against – the future of this squad under both O’Neill and Roy Keane will now be placed under the closest scrutiny Irish football has witnessed in quite some time.
Will the Green Army eventually join up with the likes of England, Wales and Northern Ireland at Euro 2016 next year, or is achieving qualification simply a task too far for this determined, yet arguably just as unpredictable, Republic of Ireland side?
We shall have to wait and see…
Most Euro 2016 betting predictions could easily place the Irish as favourites to beat Bosnia & Herzegovina in a few weeks time. Martin O’Neill’s side proved to the rest of Europe that they did in-fact have something up their sleeve after successfully seeing off world champions Germany last time out. Joachim Low’s team simply couldn't break down their rugged Irish opposition – and although his side would have likely given a better account of themselves had the match actually influenced their position in Group D – the Republic of Ireland nonetheless deserve credit for the win.
The triumphant Boys in Green now go on to face an equally testing Bosnian outfit however, one who simply won’t hand over the chance to be at Euro 2016 next summer either. The team, led by Mehmed Bazdarevic, proudly sport a selection of some the best available talent currently operating in Europe at the moment. Although the Irish certainly arrive as a group not to be taken lightly, the overall level of quality within Martin O’Neill’s ranks simply doesn’t hold up when compared with their Bosnian opposition.
A wise Euro 2016 prediction could see the likes of Vedad Ibisevic, Miralem Pjanic and Senad Lulic prove dangerous for their side across the attacking areas of the pitch, even if the Bosnian defence is admittedly a little suspect in the cold light of day. Edin Dzeko however remains an injury doubt for at least the opening leg, so that's one quality player Ireland can potentially cast their minds away from. This Euro 2016 preview nonetheless considers this upcoming fixture a distinctly difficult one for the Irish to handle, for their opposition are not to be underestimated by any degree.
That said, neither are the Irish. No one gave them a chance against the Germans last time out, but still they fought on triumphantly and managed to end the match victorious. The Green Army may as well be confident going into this match, for each of Shane Long, James McCarthey and Wes Hoolahan at least offer the Bosnians something to think about in the middle of the pitch.
With Seamus Coleman and Robbie Brady also working the defensive flanks for their manager, Martin O’Neill may just about have the tools at his disposal to make it to Euro 2016 next summer. His team have shown great spirit throughout the qualification stages so far, so if the Boys in Green are to eventually secure their place at Euro 2016, it will be on the back of hard work, and hard work alone.
A shrewd betting tip could therefore see the Irish make it in the end, if they can just find that important bit of quality in the final third. They may however need a fair amount of luck on their side if the Bosnians are to have any say in the matter…
The Republic of Ireland are currently 11/4 to beat Bosnia & Herzegovina and qualify for Euro 2016 with Bet 365
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